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RNC: Obama & Acorn Fact Sheet (Long Read)


Obama Campaign Tries To Downplay “Supposed” Connections Between Their Candidate And ACORN:

“Barack Obama Never Organized With ACORN” (Barack Obama For President Website, http://fightthesmears.com/articles/20/acornrumor, Accessed 10/4/08)

“[L]ies About His Supposed Connection To ACORN.” (Barack Obama For President Website, http://fightthesmears.com/articles/20/acornrumor, Accessed 10/4/08)


Obama Formerly Represented ACORN, Taught Classes For Future Leaders Of ACORN, And They Endorsed His 2008 Presidential Campaign:

Obama Directed Project Vote And Later Taught Classes For “Future Leaders Identified By ACORN And The Centers For New Horizons.” “He [Obama] says he is drawn to politics, despite its superficialities, as a means to advance his real passion and calling: community organization. … In 1992 Obama took time off to direct Project Vote, the most successful grass-roots voter-registration campaign in recent city history. Credited with helping elect Carol Moseley-Braun to the U.S. Senate, the registration drive, aimed primarily at African-Americans, added an estimated 125,000 voters to the voter rolls--even more than were registered during Harold Washington's mayoral campaigns. ‘It's a power thing,’ said the brochures and radio commercials. … Obama continues his organizing work largely through classes for future leaders identified by ACORN and the Centers for New Horizons on the south side.” (Hank De Zutter, Op-Ed, “What Makes Obama Run?” Chicago Reader, 12/8/95)

Obama Was Part Of Team Of Lawyers Who Represented ACORN In A Suit Against The State Of Illinois. “Obama was part of a team of attorneys who represented the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) in a lawsuit against the state of Illinois in 1995 for failing to implement a federal law designed to make it easier for the poor and others to register as voters.” (Mike Robinson, “Obama Got Start In Civil Rights Practice,” The Associated Press, 2/20/07)

ACORN’s Political Action Committee Endorsed Obama. “[A]CORN's political action committee endorsed Barack Obama for President. … The endorsement reflects a belief that Obama – who worked as a community organizer on the South Side of Chicago – understands that change must come from the ground-up, as part of a working coalition, rather than from position papers.” (Katrina Vanden Heuvel, Op-Ed, “ACORN: Obama Gets It,” The Nation, 2/23/08)

Obama’s Campaign Paid Over $800,000 To ACORN For Get-Out-The-Vote Efforts, But “Mistakenly Misrepresented” Their Work To The FEC:

Obama’s Campaign “Paid More Than $800,000” To ACORN For Get-Out-The Vote Efforts; The Campaign Originally “Misrepresented” The Group’s Work To The FEC. “U.S. Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign paid more than $800,000 to an offshoot of the liberal Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now for services the Democrat's campaign says it mistakenly misrepresented in federal reports. An Obama spokesman said Federal Election Commission reports would be amended to show Citizens Services Inc. -- a subsidiary of ACORN -- worked in ‘get-out-the-vote’ projects, instead of activities such as polling, advance work and staging major events as stated in FEC finance reports filed during the primary.” (David M. Brown, “Obama To Amend Report On $800,000 In Spending,” Pittsburgh Tribune Review, 8/22/08)

While Serving On The Board Of Directors Of The Woods Fund, ACORN Received Thousands Of Dollars Of Grants From The Organization:

The Chicago ACORN Received Grants Of $45,000 (2000), $30,000 (2001), $45,000 (2001), $30,000 (2002), And $40,000 (2002) From The Woods Fund. (Donors Forum Website, ifs.donorsforum.org, Accessed 6/10/08)

NOTE: From 1993 To 2002, Barack Obama Served On The Board Of Directors For The Woods Fund. (Tim Novak and Fran Spielman, “Obama Helped Ex-Boss Get $1 Mil. From Charity,” Chicago Sun-Times, 11/29/07)


James Terry, The Chief Public Advocate Of The Consumers Rights League, Testified About ACORN’s Pattern Of Fraud Before The Joint Oversight Committee:

The Chief Public Advocate Of The Consumers Rights League, James Terry, Testified Today In Congress About How “ACORN’s Pattern Of Fraud Can No Longer Be Dismissed As A Series Of Unfortunate Events.” “James Terry, Chief Public Advocate for the Consumers Rights League, today testified at a joint House Administration and House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on ‘Federal, State and Local Efforts to Prepare for the General 2008 Election,’ where he highlighted ‘corruption at every level of ACORN including embezzlement, cover-ups, misuse of taxpayer funds and voter fraud.’ An excerpt of his testimony follows: James Terry, Chief Public Advocate, Consumers Rights League: ‘ACORN routinely says it will clean up its act. Yet, given its decade-long history of voter fraud, embezzlement, and misuses of taxpayer funds, ACORN's pattern of fraud can no longer be dismissed as a series of 'unfortunate events.’” (“CRL Testimony On ACORN's Voter Fraud,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/25/08)

Terry Stated “It Is Fair To Question How Many Fraudulent Registrations” Submitted By ACORN May “Lead To Fraudulent Votes,” And Also Pointed Out That ACORN May Be “Willing To Undertake” Other Actions “To Influence The Election.” James Terry: “Furthermore, as this mega organization with a decades long history of violating the law is turned to get out the vote efforts, we believe it is fair to question how many fraudulent registrations may lead to fraudulent votes or what other activities they are willing to undertake to influence the election.” (“CRL Testimony On ACORN's Voter Fraud,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/25/08)

Some Of The Highlights Of ACORN Suspicious Activity In 2008:

Many Voter Applications, Submitted By ACORN, Appear To Be Fraudulent And Are Being Withheld By Seminole County’s Elections Supervisor Until They Are Proven Legitimate. “Local elections officials are looking into potential election fraud and some of the information is pointing to a Democratic-leaning voter's group. ACORN … has been registering thousands of new voters for this year's election, but in Seminole County, some voter applications are being withheld until it's proven they're legitimate. … Seminole County's elections supervisor is holding up dozens of voter registration applications because they appear to be fraudulent: wrong addresses, bad signatures and more. … Many of the applications with suspect information were turned-in by the activist group ACORN.” (“Elections Officials Look Into Voter Fraud,” WESH Orlando, 9/23/08)

“ACORN Admits That They Had A Case Of Voter Fraud Happen This Week In Seminole County,” Florida. “ACORN admits that they had a case of voter fraud happen this week in Seminole County, but say they have since fired that employee and the faulty registration has been thrown out.” (Susie Hassan, “ACORN Blamed For Florida Voter Fraud,” WZVN-HD ABC News, 9/25/08)

In Clark County, Nevada, ACORN Allegedly Submits 2,000 To 3,000 Fraudulent Applications Each Week. “ACORN, which stands for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, claims to have collected 60,000 new voter registrations in Clark County since February. The group, which works to promote the interests of lower-income people, is aiming for 100,000 by Labor Day. … The group has drawn accusations of voter fraud and criminal investigations in several states. Last year, authorities in Washington state brought felony charges against ACORN workers for filing false voter registrations. Some ACORN workers pleaded guilty and went to jail, while the organization paid $25,000 and agreed to have its registration efforts monitored in a settlement with Washington state authorities. [Clark County Registrar of Voters Larry] Lomax said while he supports the goal of getting more people registered to vote, he sees rampant fraud in the 2,000 to 3,000 registrations ACORN turns in every week.” (Molly Ball, “New Voter Sign-Ups Up,” Las Vegas Review-Journal, 7/7/08)

Nevada State Officials Are Teaming With Federal Authorities To Investigate Voter Fraud, Particularly Applications Submitted By ACORN. “Nevada state and federal authorities on Thursday announced the formation of a task force that will aggressively pursue allegations of election fraud. The secretary of state, attorney general, U.S. attorney's office and Federal Bureau of Investigation plan to work together as the election approaches and on Election Day to ensure a free and fair election in Nevada, where record turnout is anticipated. ‘This is part of an effort to work proactively,’ Secretary of State Ross Miller, the state's chief elections official, said of the combined effort, which he said would ‘ensure there is integrity in the system.’ Miller said investigators are already looking into allegations of fraud in voter registration, though he declined to go into specifics of an investigation he suggested was being handled by the FBI. Clark County officials have said they suspect fraud is occurring in the thousands of voter registrations being submitted by the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, or ACORN, which works to get low-income people to vote. ACORN, whose officials have faced fraud charges in other states, says the group's workers are trained to follow the law.” (Molly Ball, “Election Fraud Task Force Formed,” Las Vegas Review-Journal, 8/1/08)

In New Mexico, Doña Ana County Officials “Received Complaints About Misleading Voter Registration Activities.” “The Doña Ana County Bureau of Elections has received complaints about misleading voter-registration activities and wants to make sure the public knows the truth about registering. Elections Supervisor Lynn Ellins said in a news release from the county that the ‘most disturbing’ complaint is from people who say they are being told they must re-register to vote under a new law passed by the state Legislature. ‘This is simply not true,’ Ellins said. ‘Any voter who is registered and in good standing has no obligation to re-register.’” (Heath Haussamen, “Complaints In Doña Ana County,” The New Mexico Independent, 6/11/08)

Doña Ana County Spokesman Jess Williams Said That ACORN Is Responsible For Many Of The Complaints About The Voter Re-Registration Scheme. “County spokesman Jess Williams said many of the complaints are about the Association of Community Organizations for Reform, more commonly known as ACORN. The group has been actively trying to register voters in Doña Ana County in recent months. It has also received national attention in recent years for allegations in other states of voter fraud and shoddy work…” (Heath Haussamen, “Complaints In Doña Ana County,” The New Mexico Independent, 6/11/08)

In New Mexico, 1,100 Fraudulent Voter-Registration Cards Were Reported And ACORN Acknowledges That Some May Have Come From Its Group. “Such is the situation for Bernalillo County, which reported, the day before Obama’s Española rally, that it had received 1,100 fraudulent voter-registration cards. While there is no information, yet, on where those cards came from, Matthew Henderson, ACORN’s New Mexico head organizer, acknowledges some could have come from his group. ACORN, he says, has registered 75,000 New Mexicans during this election cycle.” (Mark Sanders, “Attempts To Rock The Vote, Rock The Boat,” Santa Fe Reporter, 9/24/08)

Ninety Voter Registration Forms That Included Social Security Numbers And Dates Of Birth Were Stolen From ACORN’s Las Cruces Office. “Ninety completed voter-registration applications that included Social Security numbers and dates of birth were stolen over the weekend from the Las Cruces office of an independent voter-registration group. As a result, ACORN plans to send letters to those whose applications were stolen to inform them of the situation.” (Heath Haussamen, “Completed Voter-Registration Forms Stolen From Group,” “Heath Haussamen On New Mexico Politics” Blog, haussamen.blogspot.com, 6/24/08)

In North Carolina, Durham County’s Elections Director, Mike Ashe, Has Asked That Approximately 80 Voter Registration Forms Submitted by ACORN Be Investigated For Suspicions Of Fraud. “A Durham official is asking state elections administrators to check approximately 80 voter registration forms for possible fraud. … Mike Ashe, Durham County's elections director, said the forms were among about 4,000 submitted to his office over the past four to six weeks by a national left-wing group called Acorn … Ashe's staff also learned this week of irregularities with a handful of other registrations. It was not clear who was responsible for these problems. … ‘This is serious, obviously,’ Ashe said.” (Matthew E. Milliken, “Elections Chief Asks For Voter Fraud Probe,” The Herald [NC] Sun, 9/19/08)

In Cuyahoga County, OH, ACORN Is Under Investigation By Election Officials Due To “Many Suspicious” Voter Registration Cards. “A national organization that conducts voter registration drives for low-income people has curtailed its push in Cuyahoga County after the Board of Elections accused its workers of submitting fraudulent registration cards. The board is investigating the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Results of the inquiry could be turned over to the county prosecutor. Board employees said ACORN workers often handed in the same name on a number of voter registration cards, but showing that person living at different addresses. Other times, cards had the same name listed, but a different date of birth. Still another sign of possible fraud showed a number of people living at an address that turned out to be a restaurant. … Board employees are unsure how many of the cards are fraudulent. But the voter registration department received so many suspicious cards that it began compiling a binder with evidence. The binder grew to be an inch-thick.” (Joe Guillen, “Cuyahoga Board Probes ACORN Voter Registration Drive,” The [Cleveland, OH] Plain Dealer, 8/27/08)

‘“I'm Obviously Very Concerned,’ Board Chairman Jeff Hastings Said. ‘This Goes To The Essence Of Our Democracy.’” (Joe Guillen, “Cuyahoga Board Probes ACORN Voter Registration Drive,” The [Cleveland, OH] Plain Dealer, 8/27/08)

In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Election Officials Accused ACORN “Of Filing Fraudulent Voter Registrations” But The Group Blames The Post Office. “Philadelphia elections officials are accusing the nonprofit advocacy group ‘Acorn’ of filing fraudulent voter registrations in advance of the April 22nd Pennsylvania primary. Acorn, which advocates on behalf of low-income residents in the city, has mounted a voter registration drive in the past few months. But city election commissioners are complaining that many of the submitted registrations appear to be faulty, and they have forwarded the matter to the district attorney's office for further investigation. … The city officials say many of the addresses listed on the registrations are invalid, but Acorn blames the post office for not adequately servicing low-income communities.” (Mike Dunn, “Phila. Probing Advocacy Group's Voter Registrations,” KYW Newsradio, www.kyw1060.com, 3/12/08)

One Pennsylvania ACORN Worker Is Facing “19 Counts Of Perjury, Making False Statements, Forgery And Identity Theft” Related To Voter Registration Forms. “A former temporary worker for a national community action group recently questioned by Dauphin County investigators about bogus voter registration forms is now a wanted man. Luis R. Torres-Serrano, 37, of the 200 block of South 15th Street, is accused by authorities of submitting more than 100 fraudulent voter registration forms he collected on behalf of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now to county election officials. … Torres-Serrano is charged with 19 counts of perjury, making false statements, forgery and identity theft in connection with the voter registration forms, authorities said.” (Reggie Sheffield, “Former Temp Worker Accused Of Bogus Voter Registrations,” [Harrisburg, PA] Patriot News, 7/24/08)

Milwaukee Election Officials Launched An Investigation Against ACORN For “Making People Up Or Registering People That Were Still In Prison.” “Criminal investigations could be launched against at least six voter registration workers who tried to add dead, imprisoned or imaginary people to the voter rolls, according to the Milwaukee Election Commission and the organization that employed them. Officials are reviewing some 200 to 300 fraudulent voter registration cards, Sue Edman, the commission's executive director, said Wednesday. … In about 12 cases, deputy registrars paid by ACORN were ‘making people up or registering people that were still in prison,’ said Carolyn Castore, ACORN's state political director. And in other cases, workers used the same address for numerous voters or used driver's license numbers that did not fit the voters' birth dates, Edman said. But most of the fraud involved submitting duplicate cards for voters who were already registered, and forging the voters' signatures, Castore said.” (Larry Sandler, “Fake Names Get Voter Registration Workers Investigated,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8/7/08)

All Voter Fraud Instances Under Investigation By Milwaukee Officials Are Linked To “Two Liberal Groups” - ACORN And The Community Voters Project. “Milwaukee's election chief on Wednesday turned 32 more voter registration workers in to the district attorney's office for possible prosecution, saying they tried to submit falsified registration cards. That brings to 39 the number of registration workers under scrutiny, and the number could grow, Election Commission Executive Director Sue Edman said. An organization warned the commission staff late Wednesday afternoon about some questionable cards in the latest batch collected by its workers, Edman said. All of the workers targeted for investigation were paid employees of two liberal groups running voter registration drives, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) and the Community Voters Project.” (Larry Sandler, “More Voter Registration Workers Under Scrutiny,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8/21/08)

From the Republican National Committee


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