Upset that their ‘prosperity gospel’ scam is under scrutiny, televangelists try to hide behind the separation between church and state.
A senator’s investigation into spending and oversight at six “prosperity gospel” ministries has hit a roadblock with a minister intensifying his efforts to fight the inquiry, but made progress on Monday when another turned over documents.
Grassley said his questioning of televangelists is a simple matter of wanting to ensure that non-profit organizations comply with the tax laws that are essential to their operations.
U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley is increasing pressure on five large ministries that have refused to respond to his financial inquiry even as political watchers say the investigation could hurt Republicans in the upcoming election.
An Iowa senator investigating six prominent television Christian ministries, including two in Atlanta, said Friday he will take up Creflo Dollar’s challenge to subpoena the documents he requested from them, if necessary.
Sen. Charles Grassley, the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, is preparing another round of letters to Christian television ministries, prodding them to answer questions about their spending and the way they are governed, a spokeswoman said Thursday. At the same time, an aide to the committee’s Democratic chairman indicated it would be in the ministries’ best interest to cooperate with the Iowa Republican’s investigation.
Most of the preachers who have been asked to give a financial accounting still have not done so. (They’re probably too busy conning their followers out of more and more money).
The six prosperity gospel ministries under scrutiny by Republican Sen. Charles Grassley are a tough group to take on. The televangelists are veterans at outmaneuvering opponents, and in this case are even getting support from their critics.
Only two of six Christian ministries under scrutiny for allegations of opulent spending turned over documents to a Senate panel by a Thursday deadline, with others either fighting the request or asking for more time.
Four televangelists, under investigation for the way they raise and spend money, did not turn over financial information by Thursday, the deadline set by the Senate Finance Committee, including one preacher who challenged the committee to subpoena him.