A group of ten Republican Senators, including Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (UT), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY), and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (AZ), sent a letter to the IRS this month urging the agency not to rush changes to rules governing the political activity of 501(c)(4) groups. The letter comes as third-party spending on elections has fueled the debate over the issue of what percentage of a 501(c)(4)'s activity may be political without triggering a requirement to report activity to the FEC and jeopardizing its tax-exempt status. Democrats have urged enhanced disclosure of political spending by such tax-exempt groups, and have pushed for clearer guidance on precisely what level of political activity the IRS permits before revoking 501(c)(4) status. In their letter, Republicans outlined concerns with the ambiguity of the response last month by IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman to a March letter from seven Democrats urging rule changes, and expressed concern that the agency had already begun updating the pertinent regulations. In his response to the Democrats, Shulman said the IRS would consider making changes to the regulations. The Republican letter warns the agency that its non-partisan reputation is on the line and calls for a proper rulemaking process for any changes in the rules. Commencement of an ordinary rulemaking process would effectively mean that any changes in current rules by the IRS would be issued after the November elections. Notwithstanding the political banter from both sides of the aisle, substantive changes by the IRS of regulations governing 501(c)(4) groups are not likely to occur in time to impact spending in the upcoming elections.