Leah Remini: Scientologists meet to decide ‘which ways to vote’ in elections


Emmy nominee Leah Remini says Scientologists meet to decide who to vote for in political elections — and discussed how that may relate to the church's attitude toward President Trump.

"I know when I was in the organization, there were meetings amongst Scientologists on which ways to vote, and it was anyone who was pro-Scientology and its policies," the former Scientologist told TheWrap after her nomination for Best Informational Series for "Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath."

What role if any Scientology plays in politics matters because of the Johnson Amendment, which prohibits nonprofit groups and religious organizations from endorsing or opposing candidates. Scientology fought for years to be tax exempt, and achieved that status in 1993.

Trump has vowed to "totally destroy" the Johnson Amendment. If he succeeds, many religions — including Scientology — would gain greater freedom to get involved in politics without their tax-exempt status being threatened.

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BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JANUARY 14: Actress Leah Remini arrives to the 2014 UNICEF Ball Presented by Baccarat at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel on January 14, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
DANCING WITH THE STARS - 'Episode 1710' - Leah Remini and Tony Dovolani were the next couple to be eliminated on 'Dancing with the Stars,' MONDAY, NOVEMBER 18 (8:00-10:01 pm, ET), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Adam Taylor/ABC via Getty Images) TONY DOVOLANI, LEAH REMINI, BROOKE BURKE-CHARVET, TOM BERGERON
Actress LEAH REMINI at the Los Angeles premiere of Swordfish. 04JUN2001. Paul Smith/Featureflash
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LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 03: A view of the Church of Scientology International in Hollywood on February 03, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
The Hollywood Church of Scientology Celebrity Centre.
Church of Scientology, Toronto Head Office
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CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY EUROPEAN OFFICE FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS AND HUMAN RIGHTS 91 RUE DE LA LOI BRUSSELS
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On Sunday, TheWrap wrote about a Scientology-heavy neighborhood that was one of the only Los Angeles precincts to vote for Trump in the 2016 election. Asked whether an institute like Scientology would support Trump, Remini replied: "I don't know, other than there's a Scientology policy that speaks derogatorily about democracy. And, certainly, Scientology doesn't represent what a democracy is."

"It is a dictatorship, it's everything at its worst," Remini said. "L. Ron Hubbard's words are to be followed to the T. Scientologists follow policy."

Asked if Trump might support Scientology, Remini said: "I'm taking a stab, I don't know the man or his stance on cults, but it seems as though he might support Scientology and cults and they support him."

In a letter to TheWrap Thursday, Scientology spokeswoman Karin Pouw denied the church is anti-democracy. She referenced quotes from the group's founder, L. Ron Hubbard, including, "Democracy is probably the best political theory, workably, that has been introduced over the last twenty-five hundred years. ... It postulates the belief that men should be free to decide things for themselves. It outlaws tyranny as undesirable and relegates government to the service of the group, rather than the group to the service of government."

The letter also stated: "Scientology is nonpolitical. Individual Scientologists hold their own political views and tend to support governments or political parties which form democratic systems, honor the dignity and freedom of citizens and protect human rights."

RELATED: Scientology churches around the world:

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Scientology churches around the world
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Scientology churches around the world
People walk past the building where television station KCET used to be housed in Los Angeles, California July 10, 2012. The Church of Scientology, the religion whose followers include actors Tom Cruise and John Travolta, plans to start a religious broadcasting center to promote its teachings over TV, radio and the Internet. The center, located near the church's West Coast headquarters in Hollywood, would occupy the nearly five-acre studio property the church bought last year from Los Angeles public TV station KCET for $42 million. Picture taken July 10. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT)
The entrance of the European Office for Public Affairs and Human Rights of the Church of Scientology is pictured in Brussels, Belgium March 11, 2016, after a Belgian court acquitted the Church of Scientology on Friday of charges of forming a criminal organization, and dismissed demands that it should close its Belgian branch and European headquarters. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir
A man walks past the building of the Churches of Scientology for Europe in Brussels, March 11, 2016, after a Belgian court acquitted the Church of Scientology on Friday of charges of forming a criminal organization, and dismissed demands that it should close its Belgian branch and European headquarters. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir
People walk past the Church of Scientology of Los Angeles building in Los Angeles, California July 3, 2012. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES - Tags: RELIGION SOCIETY)
People walk past a sign outside the Church of Scientology of Los Angeles building in Los Angeles, California July 3, 2012. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES - Tags: RELIGION SOCIETY)
The building of the Church of Scientology is seen in Hamburg August 8, 2007. REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen (GERMANY)
The sign of the Scientology library is seen on the headquarters of the Church of Scientology in Paris May 19, 2009. REUTERS/Charles Platiau (FRANCE RELIGION)
The building of the Church of Scientology is seen in Hamburg August 8, 2007. REUTERS/Morris Mac Matzen (GERMANY)
A man stands on a ladder to clean the entrance of the new office of the Scientology Church in Berlin January 13, 2007. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann (GERMANY)
U.S. Actor Tom Cruise gives a speech at the inaguration of a Scientology church to a large crowd in a street in Madrid September 18, 2004. According to Scientology headquarters in Los Angeles, the 50-year-old religion now claims more than 8 million members in 159 countries. The church's most famous celebrities include John Travolta, Tom Cruise and Nancy Cartwright, who is the voice of Bart Simpson. REUTERS/Paul Hanna PH/WS
MILAN, ITALY - OCTOBER 31: A general view of the new Scientology Church is seen on the opening day on October 31, 2015 in Milan, Italy. The five-story, four-building, 258-windows, former headquarters of Philips and computer company Sun has been converted into a 10,000 square meter Scientology church and will be the largest of its kind in the world. (Photo by Awakening/Getty Images)
MILAN, ITALY - OCTOBER 31: Final preparations at the new Scientology Church ahead of today opening ceremony on October 31, 2015 in Milan, Italy. The five-story, four-building, 258-windows, former headquarters of Philips and computer company Sun has been converted into a 10,000 square meter Scientology church and will be the largest of its kind in the world. (Photo by Awakening/Getty Images)
The newly inaugurated Scientology's headquarters in Bogota, on July 6, 2015. Scientology, a religion founded by US writer L. Ron Hubbard in the 50s, opens in the Colombian capital the first Scientology Ideal Organization church in South America. AFP PHOTO/GUILLERMO LEGARIA / AFP PHOTO / GUILLERMO LEGARIA (Photo credit should read GUILLERMO LEGARIA/AFP/Getty Images)
The newly inaugurated Scientology's headquarters in Bogota, on July 6, 2015. Scientology, a religion founded by US writer L. Ron Hubbard in the 50s, opens in the Colombian capital the first Scientology Ideal Organization church in South America. AFP PHOTO/GUILLERMO LEGARIA / AFP PHOTO / GUILLERMO LEGARIA (Photo credit should read GUILLERMO LEGARIA/AFP/Getty Images)
Church of Scientology Building on 4810 Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles. (Photo by Ted Soqui/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 27, 2015: A New York City police officer walks past The Church of Scientology of New York headquarters on West 46th Street. (Photo by Robert Alexander/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 30, 2013: The original Transamerica Corporation headquarters was in a Beaux Arts building in San Francisco's North Beach area. The building is now headquarters of the Scientology Church of San Francisco. The historic building, built in 1916, is near the landmark Transamerican Pyramid building in the city's Financial District. Transamerica Corporation is a private holding company for various life insurance companies and investment firms. It was acquired by the Dutch company Aegon in 1999 on September 30, 2013 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Robert Alexander/Getty Images)
CLEARWATER, FL - NOVEMBER 16: A large, red ribbon drapes across the front of the of the new Scientology Flag Building on November 16, 2013 in Clearwater, Florida. Construction of the 377,000-square-foot center began in 1999 and cost more than $40 million dollars to complete. (Photo by Tim Boyles/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 05: L. Ron Hubbard, founder of the Church of Scientology, is seen on DVDs inside the Church of Scientology community center in the neighborhood of South Los Angeles on June 5, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
CLEARWATER, FL - JANUARY 16: A headquarters for the Church of Scientology is seen January 16, 2013 in Clearwater, Florida. A book, 'Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood & the Prison of Belief' that is sent to be released January 17, has renewed interest in the religion that counts actors Tom Cruise and John Travolta as followers. (Photo by Getty Images)
(GERMANY OUT) Deutschland, Berlin, Scientology Kirche Charlottenburg (Photo by Sch�ning/ullstein bild via Getty Images)
The new Church of Scientology of Denver building at 23rd and Blake St. in Denver Tuesday, June 19th, 2012. Andy Cross, The Denver Post (Photo By Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
A sign of the Church of Scientology is pictured on November 14, 2009 in the center of the Swiss city of Lausanne. AFP PHOTO/ FABRICE COFFRINI (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)
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The letter also stated, "The Church of Scientology as a matter of principle does not strive for participation in any secular power."

Despite its Emmy nomination, Remini's program won't be getting any plaudits from the church, which it calls a "bigoted hate-filled program."

But Remini says her show aims to enlighten people. She hopes the show, which has been renewed for a second season, will resonate with people interested in all forms of social justice.

"[It's] not just about cults, but about the current climate. Feeling apathetic about things they can do nothing about ... I'm not talking about Scientology, I'm talking about the affairs of the world today. People are taking action and I hope that we are a part of that swell, feeling like they can do something," she said.

Read original story Leah Remini: Scientologists Meet to Decide 'Which Ways to Vote' in Elections At TheWrap

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