Friday, October 10, 2008

The ACORN conspiracy theory

FAUX news and the far right are going ballistic over the voting registration drives by ACORN which by the way stands for Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

Lets look at the facts. ACORN does do voter registration drives. ACORN represents groups that do lean democratic. Obama did represent ACORN in a legal matter years ago. ACORN hires people for $8 an hour to help with their voter registration drives. Some of these employees have defrauded ACORN by submitting false voter registration forms.

ACORN fires those they find are submitting false registrations. ACORN themselves notify authorities of any suspected fraud and work with authorities on any investigations. National Public Radio reports that they contacted several local officials and they confirmed that ACORN was indeed trying to clean up their act.

From NPR: Mike Slater is the executive director of Project Vote, which helps ACORN with its voter registration drives. He says it's the Republicans who are causing confusion and misleading voters. He says the RNC has distorted the group's record, and that actually ACORN is the one pointing out registration problems to local election officials. Slater says ACORN is the victim of a few bad workers (it hires people at $8.00 an hour) who are trying to defraud them. He adds: "It's like the RNC having a news conference every time a Wal-Mart employee is fired for theft."

Fact: Obama never worked as a community organizer for Acorn, he did not work as a trainer for them, nor was ACORN involved in the successful Project Vote project that Obama was part of in 1992.

There is only one tie between Obama and ACORN. From In his capacity as an attorney, Barack represented ACORN in a successful lawsuit alongside the U.S. Department of Justice against the state of Illinois to force state compliance with a federal voting access law. For his work helping enforce the law, called “Motor Voter,” Barack received the IVI-IPO Legal Eagle Award in 1995.

This is clearly an attempt to paint the work of this organization as some evil conspiracy, when the reality is the Republicans are always threatened when more people vote. Republicans have a long history of voter suppression, ACORN is one of many organisations that have brought more Americans to participate in our democracy.

There is no fraud here unless people use false registrations to vote which is unlikely. At worst it is poor oversight by ACORN organizers. Because it is does slow down and increase the work of Boards of Elections ACORN does need to improve their management of the registration process.

Read ACORN's side on The Kicker

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill Ayers is just an excuse to say "OBAMA" and "TERRORIST" in the same sentence.

ACORN is just an excuse to say "OBAMA" and "STEAL THE ELECTION" in the same sentence.

The McCain campaign's unified message? "OBAMA IS A TERRORIST WHO IS GOING TO STEAL THE ELECTION."

Do we really think that they are going to drop this argument come November 5? Or are they planting the seeds for something even more despicable? It sounds to me as though they are laying the groundwork for a straight-up coup. Re-watch those videos of the McCain crowds/mobs. Everyone says the attacks on Obama are 'backfiring'...that McCain's attempts to win the election are stirring up the most extreme elements in our society. Well, the attacks are not backfiring--and will probably continue--if stirring up the extreme elements is EXACTLY WHAT THEY WANT.

Mobs shouting "kill him"? Exactly what they want--it emboldens the fringe. Rush Limbaugh inventing a theory of militant US black madrassas? Exactly what they want--it further radicalizes the fringe. Fox News' 24/7 Acorn coverage? Exactly what they want--it draws people into the fringe. Factor in the domestic deployment of US troops for "crowd control" and you start to see a picture of where this could go. Factor in GWB's new martial law privileges and you've got a truly terrifying possibility.

12:42 PM  

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