Meanwhile, in other election fraud news: the Supreme Court has refused to give the notorious group ACORN one last opportunity to challenge its loss of federal funding. ACORN, of course, was the corrupt and multiply-indicted organization with a multi-year rap sheet for election registration fraud; it was finally stripped of its federal patronage after a series of sting videos involving its membership providing legal and economic assistance to two people posing as a prostitute and pimp for underage, illegal immigrant prostitutes.
And if you think that the previous sentence bugs ACORN’s erstwhile defenders, here’s another provocation: this entire exercise, of course, was merely the first scalp that can be claimed by Andrew Breitbart and his krew. The Left has been trying to kill them off ever since; if you’re wondering how well they did, well, go ask Antony Weiner.
I paraphrase: the HUD actually indicated that ACORN had taken a lot of money from the government, hadn’t properly accounted for how it was spent, and that its ‘replacement’ AHCOA needs to make things right before it gets any more funding. ACORN’s/AHCOA’s response? “Well, we took a bath from to the fallout from that underage El Salvadoran brothel sting operation thing last year, so we shouldn’t have to pay back any of that money that we spent on election fraud. Err, low-income housing assistance.”
PS: If HUD is inclined to take this argument seriously, may I remind HUD that, starting next January, Rep. Darrell Issa is unlikely to be merely the Ranking Member of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee?
In 2008, I (and most of the rest of the Online Right) engaged in a long and unsuccessful fight against the notorious group ACORN. It was, honestly, a frustrating one: although you could show, time after time after time again, that ACORN was routinely involved in election fraud (including election registration fraud, which was its usual apologists’ prime excuse/primary distraction) we never could get any traction from that. And ACORN knew this, and was insufferably smug about it as they went on their merry way urinating on the election process for the eventual benefit of the Democratic party.
In 2009, I watched Andrew Breitbart and his band of Merry Pranksters casually swat ACORN out of the air like the annoying fly that it was – and they did it by destroying the group’s primary reputation as a community group. Once people associated ACORN with ‘adviser to pimps of underage El Salvadorean brothels,’ the money dried up, the name got radioactive, and the group fell prey to vicious internal backbiting. At this moment, it becomes a story if the successors/fragments of ACORN are found to be involved in any political race in 2010 – which is why any involvement by the remnants will be hidden very, very deeply. In other words, gutting ACORN was a heavy win for conservatives, Republicans, Right-activists, and pretty much anybody who doesn’t like election fraud. Continue reading Pundit theory vs. activist practice, ACORN edition.
This sentence from the latest PPP Brown/Coakley poll jumped out at me:
Overall 25% of voters in the state think ACORN will mess with the Senate election while 38% don’t and 37% are unsure.
Tom Jensen’s been making a good-faith (and I think, largely successful) effort to keep his own political bias out of his firm’s polling, so I don’t blame him for not pointing out that this means that almost 2/3rds of the population of Massachusetts is willing to believe that ACORN could be planning election fraud. In Massachusetts.
Nine days after there was an announcement that their group was going to be investigated? Yup, that’s right: ACORN. San Diego office – just before California AG Jerry Brown came to visit. Alas, if only somebody had had the foresight to wait for this sort of thing to happen, and retrieve the documents…
They didn’t shred, they didn’t redact, and they threw out people’s sensitive and personal information – including things like copies of Social Security cards, W-4 forms, and driver’s licenses. I’m not a lawyer, but apparently that’s grounds for legal action right there; document disposal requirements are very, very strict. Which is why the local ACORN branch is trying the novel ‘Oops, fall cleaning‘ excuse.
Which almost might be believable, except of course for the underage El Salvadoran illegal immigrant brothel thing.
And this message is to Attorney General Holder: I want you to know that we have more tapes, it’s not just ACORN, and we’re going to hold out until the next election cycle, or else if you want to do a clean investigation, we will give you the rest of what we have, we will comply with you, we will give you the documentation we have from countless ACORN whistleblowers who want to come forward but are fearful of this organization and the retribution that they fear that this is a dangerous organization. So if you get into an investigation, we will give you the tapes; if you don’t give us the tapes, we will revisit these tapes come election time.
Italics in original. If this is a bluff… well. Every time somebody thought that Andrew Breitbart has been bluffing on the ACORN scandal, he’s turned out not to be. The latest one has Patterico almost gibbering in glee as he rakes the LA Times and James Rainey over the coals for their uncritical willingness to believe Lavelle Stewart; it doesn’t seem particularly safe to hope that this time is the time that Breitbart’s got nothing left.
When I saw this title from The Conservatives.com (“Defeated Candidate to Sue ACORN Official for Costing Her Election”), I smiled. I also said to myself,You know what would be great? It’d be great if that sanctimonious, unctuous [expletive deleted] Scott Levenson was involved in this somehow. That would be great. But seeing as I can’t think of anything nice enough on the karmic scale to justify that kind of boon, I wasn’t really hopeful.
Democrat Janine Materna’s campaign is considering suing its consulting firm, the Advance Group, for $1 million, and claimed that consultant Scott Levenson’s position with the controversial ACORN group was among the reasons Ms. Materna lost the South Shore City Council race.
“It’s because of him that Janine lost the election,” said Jodi Materna, her sister’s campaign manager.
She said the campaign did not know of Levenson’s ACORN affiliation and if it had, “we never would have hired him.”
I agree with Brian that this is nonsense – if I’ve known that Scott Levenson has been a sanctimonious, unctuous [expletive deleted] for ACORN since the 2008 election season, then so should have the Materna campaign – but it’s funny nonsense that will put a spring in your step. Apparently Advance Group/ACORN couldn’t even bother to get mailings out on time, which just goes to show: it’s not that these groups are good at what they do. They’re actually pretty bad at it. It’s just that usually they don’t have anybody providing them with any sort of meaningful opposition.
That sanctimonious, unctuous [expletive deleted].
Crossposted to RedState.
[FURTHER UPDATE] Welcome, Instapundit readers. Note the petition below.
[UPDATE]: Thanks to Randy Mastro and RedState’s Francis Cianfrocca – who will have a lot more to say about these races – here’s the petition cataloging said skulduggery; and you will not find it dull reading. (If you’re having trouble reading it, try here.)
It’s not that our opponents are geniuses at skulduggery. It’s that they’re unaccustomed to being challenged on it. When they do, they make mistakes. [Witness this latest from NYC for an example:]
A City Council hopeful won’t cough up documents related to whether the Working Families Party is scamming the campaign finance system — because the case could involve “criminal liability,” according to documents released yesterday.
The bombshell development was revealed at a court hearing where lawyers for the WFP and the campaign of Staten Island candidate Debi Rose tried to get a suit against them tossed.
Former Giuliani administration Deputy Mayor Randy Mastro, the lawyer opposing the Rose campaign, called it an “extraordinary development.”
The suit itself – I’m working to get a copy of it sent to me – alleges that WFP (which is, of course, a front for ACORN) is violating campaign finance laws by having WFP front group Data and Field Services provide “canvassing and other services for [City Council candidate Debi] Rose in her primary campaign against [current Conservative candidate* Ken] Mitchell for which the firm received far less than the market value.” In that context, trying to avoid financial disclosure on the grounds of possible self-incrimination is at the very least eyebrow-raising; which is why they tried to walk back on it before 24 hours had passed. It should also be noted that the Rose race in Staten Island is not the only one where this sort of thing went on; Queens City Council candidate James Van Bramer is likewise heavily involved with WFP/Data & Field Services, as this diary from the Daily Kos (of all places) makes clear. I’m sure that his campaign is watching this case unfold with great interest.
The moral here? Well, aside from the obvious one of “ACORN taints everything that it touches,” it’s this: one-party rule makes people stupid. And stupid people make mistakes. Keep that in mind the next time you’re trying to decide whether or not to fight City Hall.
*Who is actually a Democrat. Welcome to New York fusion politics.