(Bloomberg) -- The American Civil Liberties Union sued the state of New Jersey over a new law requiring tax-exempt organizations to publicly disclose the names, addresses and employers of people who donate more than $10,000.
The law violates the Constitution by placing a burden on speech and so-called associational conduct protected by the First Amendment, according to a complaint filed Tuesday in federal court in Trenton. Such lists have been sought by both liberals and conservatives in efforts to expose “dark money” seen to be influencing elections ahead of the 2020 presidential vote.
Governor Phil Murphy, a Democrat, signed the bill into law in June after expressing concern about its constitutionality, according to the complaint. He vetoed an identical bill just a few months earlier, the ACLU said.
The ACLU also claims the law wrongfully forces it to disclose donors for activities that aren’t related to elections, such as efforts to reform the criminal justice system or legalize marijuana. And the law is too vague, the group claims, because it doesn’t specify a time frame for the $10,000 threshold.
New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal didn’t immediately return a message seeking comment. The ACLU also didn’t immediately provide a comment.
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