The draft now makes a distinction between “campaigning activities which can further charitable purposes” and “political activities which can be undertaken by a charity only in the context of supporting charitable purposes” (Third Sector Online, 25 January).
The new draft has so far been hailed as an improvement by campaigners, but Clark believes it muddies the waters more than ever.
“I fear that the Charity Commission, in seeking to help charities, may confuse them,” he said. “In September, the commission was clear that “the law is clear and well established” and political activity could not be the dominant means by which charities carry out their charitable purposes.
“By ditching the concept, the commission has given charities a misleading guide to the law.”