September 27, 2009
The level of the current right wing frenzy against the Association of Communities Organizing for Reform Now (ACORN) can only be understood within the dynamics of President Barack Obama's 2008 election and John Kerry's "official" loss in 2004.
ACORN, more than any other political organization, was responsible for Obama's victory. ACORN in Ohio, and in key swing states, did what the Democratic Party used to do, but now seems incapable of doing registering large numbers of low income and working class voters.
Instead of going after the real whores at Chase, CitiBank, and assorted other financial institutions that pimped our system and our people, undercover right wing videographers went for a target that fit their pre-fabricated agenda a fake Daddy Mac and prostitute trying to open up a brothel with an ACORN member's advice. Of course any ACORN people involved in illegal practices should be investigated, as should anyone in the elite financial community and anyone out there misusing federal Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) money.
For that matter, the war criminals in the United States beginning with Cheney and Bush who committed war crimes, violated the 4th and 8th Amendments by spying on U.S. citizens and torturing people should be stalked and videotaped whenever possible.
The major reason ACORN has been a target of the Republican Party's political operatives because it disrupts the strategy put in place by Karl Rove to simply purge as many Democratic voters as possible.
Here in Ohio, the Republican Party led a charge to purge an estimated 1.25 million voters. The GOP attacked black students at Wilberforce, a traditionally black college. They attacked inner city voters in the heavily Democratic wards of Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. They attacked students at liberal colleges like Kenyon and students who had gone to major public universities like the Ohio State University and Ohio University.
ACORN was one of the few organizations that was consistently active in the inner city of Ohio's largest urban areas. Not that there weren't other voter registration organizations, including the Obama campaign, but the one that asked me to register to vote over and over again in the inner city neighborhood I live in was ACORN.
Recall that Arkansas U.S. Attorney Bud Cummins and Western Missouri U.S. Attorney Todd Graves were fired for failing to go after ACORN during its 2006 voter registration drive. Those responsible for the firing reached all the way to Rove in Bush's White House.
The National Journal reported that former Bush-Cheney re-election campaign attorney Mark "Thor" Hearne targeted ACORN: "[Hearne] believed that the U.S. Attorney Todd Graves was not taking seriously allegations that ACORN workers were registering people who did not qualify to vote."
The Republican sting operation is little more than an extension of the attacks on ACORN in Nevada, Missouri and Ohio in the 2006 election. In 2006, estimates were that ACORN had registered some 1.3 million new voters. The attacks on ACORN, and their contrived nature were revealed at a 2005 hearing before then-Congressman Bob Ney in Ohio, who was later convicted of a felony.
At the federal hearing held in the Ohio Statehouse, Hearne emerged from nowhere claiming to be a voting rights advocate with a front organization called the American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR). In a classic Rovian scam, Hearne unleashed an unsubstantiated litany of "voter fraud" charges against ACORN and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
Among other things, Hearne, who had no history of ever working as a voting rights advocate, told Congressman Ney that voter registration campaigns were used crack cocaine as an incentive for registering new voters. Using the age-old canard of linking a black civil rights and a welfare rights organization with drugs serves the racist stereotypes consistently pitched by right-wingers.
In Hearne's testimony in Ohio, he also went after the AFL-CIO and Americans Coming Together (ACT-Ohio) as evil-doers involved in "fraudulent" voter registration.
In a March 2005 letter to the U.S. Department of Justice, Hearne claimed there was "substantial evidence to suggest potential criminal wrongdoing by organizations such as Americans Coming Together, ACORN, and the NAACP-Project Vote."