October 24, 2008

The Little ACORN That Couldn't

Hatched by Dafydd

Recently, Republicans have been quaking in their boots over the oak-thewed ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, and their mighty voter registration drive that netted (they claimed) more than 1.3 million newly registered voters. It's a tidal wave! We'll be swamped on election day!

But word trickled out today that, well, not quite:

On Oct. 6, the community organizing group Acorn and an affiliated charity called Project Vote announced with jubilation that they had registered 1.3 million new voters. But it turns out the claim was a wild exaggeration, and the real number of newly registered voters nationwide is closer to 450,000, Project Vote’s executive director, Michael Slater, said in an interview.

The remainder are registered voters who were changing their address and roughly 400,000 that were rejected by election officials for a variety of reasons, including duplicate registrations, incomplete forms and fraudulent submissions from low-paid field workers trying to please their supervisors, Mr. Slater acknowledged....

“We were wondering how many were Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse,” said Danny Diaz, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee. “The group is really tainted, and any work they do is suspect.”

But not to worry; ACORN is perfectly willing to submit to investigation of its voter registration project... self-investigation, that is. In fact, they've already conducted just such a self-examination and discovered themselves a clean bill of health:

In interviews this week, Acorn officials said they had an extensive program to detect fraudulent applications, which included calling the registrants to verify information provided on the forms. They also said they had combed through electronic records from the group’s field offices across the country, and that their internal audit did not show evidence of pervasive voter registration fraud.

The key word there is of course "pervasive." ACORN itself estimated 15,000 fraudulent registrations; in addition, up to 25% of new registrations were actually duplicates, and an additional 5% were "incomplete." Brian Kettenring, an ACORN spokesman, says the group intends to correct its website -- which today still touts the wildly inflated 1.3 million figure -- to say they've only registered 900,000 voters... despite the fact that they have already determined that only about 450,000 are actually new registrations.

Thus they are apparently going to correct an error of 190% too high down to an error of only 100% too high; after all, "the group did not intend to be misleading," explains the New York Times. (Keep checking back on the ACORN link above to see how long it takes them actually to make this correction; will it be before or after the election?)

The ACORN affilliate actually running the voter-registration drive, Project Vote, angrily responded to the Times article:

In our interview with the Times we explained that roughly 35 percent of our registrants are expected to be brand-new voters, and another 35 percent will be Americans who needed to update their registrations. Perhaps another 30 percent will be incomplete, will fail to match in government systems, or will be from people who did not realize they were already registered. Less than 1-2 percent will turn out to be deliberately falsified by canvassers.

The Times article’s characterization is particularly disappointing since Project Vote has been open and forthcoming about these numbers throughout our drive, and in fact explained the same realities about voter registration drives to New York Times reporter Shaila Dewan for a story that appeared on June 15th of this year.

Here is an example of ACORN's forthcomingness, from their own website:

Registering to vote is one of the first steps toward becoming a full participant in American democracy and a citizen who can influence change in a community. ACORN helped more than 1.68 million citizens to register to vote in voter registration drives leading up to the 2004 and 2006 elections.

This year we have seen unprecedented interest in the Presidential election. We are proud that we have been able to capture the excitement by helping over 1.3 million citizens register to vote. This has been the largest, non-partisan voter registration effort in history. Please see our news section to read updates about our voter engagement work.

ACORN helps the people register who most need to make their voices heard in this election: African Americans, Latinos, low-income citizens, and youth. These new voters are getting involved in the election process because they want to see changes in health care, the economy, mortgage lending practices, and public schools.

I can't quite find exactly where they've been forthcoming about the fact that only 35% of that 1.3 million figure comprises new registrations, rather than reregistering people who are already registered to vote; perhaps I'm just not reading closely enough. But to be fair, they mentioned it in a quote buried deep within an interview back in June -- and yet again a scant four months later. I reckon that about covers their "forthcomingness" responsibility.

So ACORN's internal evaluation completely clears them; it's time to MoveOn. But other investigators don't seem quite so sanguine:

In Las Vegas, where state officials raided Acorn offices this month to seize records, the county registrar of voters, Harvard L. Lomax, said his workers had found hundreds of potentially fraudulent registrations beyond those identified by Acorn.

Hundreds more fraudulent registrations in one city alone (population 558,880) translates to many thousands more fraudulent registrations on top of the 15,000 already admitted to by ACORN. That doesn't sound like much, until one realizes that Project Vote has been targeting swing states where (by definition) the vote will be close: A few thousand fraudulent voters could possibly swing Ohio, Colorado, Nevada, Virginia, or Florida; if even one of those states flipped, it would without question hand the presidency to Barack H. Obama.

Regardless of the fact that ACORN turned out to be the little engine that couldn't -- at least not to the extent they're still claiming -- nevertheless, they are still the largest community voter-fraud organization in the country and Obama's favorite financial recipient and donor both. No matter how the election goes in eleven days, it's urgent that the Republican Party find a way to break the back of ACORN's illegal voter-fraud program.

We need high-level prosecutions of top ACORN officials and the "community organization" itself under RICO statutes as an ongoing criminal enterprise. Nothing less will deter its leaders... certainly not the jailing of a few low-level "soldiers."

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, October 24, 2008, at the time of 4:26 PM

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The following hissed in response by: Baggi

They really are pulling out all the stops for this election. Maybe they do each election?

I can't wait until election day. Betcha they will announce Barack Obama the winner by breakfast due to the huge turnout. How will they know? Exit polls!

Ive already heard some lefty's saying that they will riot in the streets if Obama doesn't win this one. The mantra is something like, "Don't let the Republicans steal yet another election".

Basically, the Obama Campaign (IE: NBC, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, New York Times, Newsweek, US Magazine, Oprah, etc) have done their job, convinced all the liberals and lefty's that there is no race here, only a coronation, and the only way one could lose is to have it stolen.

The above hissed in response by: Baggi [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 24, 2008 6:33 PM

The following hissed in response by: krkrjak

Hmmmmm.....Self policing...self investigation. Yeah right! That one has worked so well in the finance/mortgage markets.

The above hissed in response by: krkrjak [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 24, 2008 7:21 PM

The following hissed in response by: hunter

Great lizard,
If the Obamatons prevail, ACORN will be part of the cabinet.
Think Chicago. The chances of an investigation against democrat corruption in the Obamanation going anywhere besides the shredder is nil.
They will be too busy shutting down the radio and internet, cleansing it of pesky conservatives.

The above hissed in response by: hunter [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 25, 2008 5:32 AM

The following hissed in response by: TBinSTL

Do you read Sutter Cane?

The above hissed in response by: TBinSTL [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2008 1:39 AM

The following hissed in response by: Davod

Just what was the investigation - a behind the scenes discussion with a certain campaign's operatives on how to minimize the fallout with no actual review of the submissions.

If the fake voters submit an early vote, what happens to the real voter when thy turn up on election day.

The above hissed in response by: Davod [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2008 1:56 AM

The following hissed in response by: Nathan

When considering how to respond to ACORN, we need to ask ourselves one question: What Would Grignr Do?

Sorry. Can't read the word "thew" without thinking about The Eye of Argon.

Actually, I wonder if Grignr is registered to vote in Ohio.

The above hissed in response by: Nathan [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2008 9:09 AM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh


Actually, I wonder if Grignr is registered to vote in Ohio.

I can't say; but if Obama wins, we'll all be in egg-huddled masses.


The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2008 12:33 PM

The following hissed in response by: scrapiron

Getting paid by the individual registration form turned in indicates that someone is really ripping someone off within the organization. They need to do a self investigation to see who has their own head up their a**. Thieves stealing from thieves. Criminals getting ripped off by criminals, is that a new one or did I see that in a movie? But then when did a democrats project ever turn out the way they planned?

The above hissed in response by: scrapiron [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 26, 2008 9:46 PM

The following hissed in response by: MNotaro

"Basically, the Obama Campaign (IE: NBC, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, New York Times, Newsweek, US Magazine, Oprah, etc) have done their job, convinced all the liberals and lefty's that there is no race here, only a coronation, and the only way one could lose is to have it stolen."

Obama and the left wing illuminati MSM are trying to tell the public that this race is over-but maybe they are just trying to make the McCain supporters think that and that we won't go out to vote, thinking it's a slam dunk. But they have another thing coming!

The above hissed in response by: MNotaro [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 28, 2008 11:18 AM

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