Donors who give more than $5,000 to Nonprofits in New York must be publicly disclosed.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman won dismissal of a lawsuit by the Conservative Advocacy group Citizens United, which sued to block the rule.
Citizens United had argued its First Amendment rights were being attacked and that their donors "reasonably fear public backlash, financial harm, and worse" if their support of the group were revealed, according to a ruling on Monday in Federal Court in Manhattan.
Citizens United contends donors’ privacy is warranted because the organization has become politically contentious and controversial in recent years, even being compared to al-Qaeda and an "enemy of the people" by its detractors.
"Plaintiffs provide no factual background or support for their conclusory assertions," U.S. District Judge Sidney Stein said in the ruling rejecting the argument.
Schneiderman, a Democrat, said the decision was a victory for "common-sense oversight" of New York’s nonprofit sector. "New Yorkers deserve to know their donations are protected against fraud and abuse, and today the Court protected that right by dismissing each and every one of Citizens United’s claims,” he said.
Citizens United gained notoriety after its 2010 victory over the Federal Election Commission in the U.S. Supreme Court in a decision that cleared the way for unlimited political spending by corporations, unions and wealthy individuals.
The group has been especially active in the run-up to November’s Presidential election, filing several suits seeking information about Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State, including how much influence Clinton and her team had over the State Department’s Office of Inspector General.
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