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Obama Claims He Never Worked For ACORN

October 8, 2008

Thanks to Sweetness and Light for finding this

On Obama’s Fight the Smears rapid respponse website, it notes:

Barack Obama Never Organized with ACORN

Discredited Republican voter-suppression guru Ken Blackwell is attacking Barack Obama with naked lies about his supposed connection to ACORN.

• Fact: Barack was never an ACORN community organizer.
• Fact: Barack was never an ACORN trainer and never worked for ACORN in any other capacity.
• Fact: ACORN was not part of Project Vote, the successful voter registration drive Barack ran in 1992.

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…

However…

What Makes Obama Run?

Lawyer, teacher, philanthropist, and author Barack Obama doesn’t need another career. But he’s entering politics to get back to his true passion–community organization.

By Hank De Zutter
December 8, 1995

… Another strong supporter of Obama’s work–as an organizer, as a lawyer, and now as a candidate–is Madeline Talbott, lead organizer of the feisty ACORN community organization, a group that’s a thorn in the side of most elected officials. “I can’t repeat what most ACORN members think and say about politicians. But Barack has proven himself among our members. He is committed to organizing, to building a democracy. Above all else, he is a good listener, and we accept and respect him as a kindred spirit, a fellow organizer.”

Obama continues his organizing work largely through classes for future leaders identified by ACORN and the Centers for New Horizons on the south side. Conducting a session in a New Horizons classroom, Obama, tall and thin, looks very much like an Ivy League graduate student. Dressed casually prep, his tie loosened and his top shirt button unfastened, he leads eight black women from the Grand Boulevard community through a discussion of “what folks should know” about who in Chicago has power and why they have it. It’s one of his favorite topics, and the class bubbles with suggestions about how “they” got to be high and mighty…

That’s cute, in addition:

Project Vote is the voter-mobilization arm of ACORN. It is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose professed purpose is to carry out “non-partisan” voter registration drives; to counsel voters on their rights; and to litigate on behalf of voting rights — focusing on the rights of the poor and the “disenfranchised.” …

and

Obama started building the base years before. For instance, ACORN noticed him when he was organizing on the far south side of the city with the Developing Communities Project. He was a very good organizer. When he returned from law school, we asked him to help us with a lawsuit to challenge the state of Illinois’ refusal to abide by the National Voting Rights Act, also known as motor voter. Allied only with the state of Mississippi, Illinois had been refusing to allow mass-based voter registration according to the new law. Obama took the case, known as ACORN vs. Edgar (the name of the Republican governor at the time) and we won. Obama then went on to run a voter registration project with Project VOTE in 1992 that made it possible for Carol Moseley Braun to win the Senate that year. Project VOTE delivered 50,000 newly registered voters in that campaign (ACORN delivered about 5000 of them).

ACORN is rearin its ugly head across the country. I didn’t think this would play out, but it looks like it might

Michelle also has an article about the thug thizzle and ACORN fraud across America:

In addition to the Las Vegas raid, fraud allegations keep piling up:

— Lake County, Ind., election officials this month rejected a large portion of the 5,000 registration forms ACORN turned in after conducting registration drives in the area all summer. Some vote canvassers had pulled names and addresses from telephone books and forged signatures. According to local reports, “large numbers of voter registration forms bore signatures all in the same apparent handwriting style” and “apparently the organization’s canvassers broke rules to meet ACORN-set voter registration quotas to get paid.” The fake registrants included dead people and underage kids.

On a conference call yesterday, GOP officials noted that up to 11,000 voter applications were no good — tying up election officials and jeopardizing the voting rights of untold victims whose identities may have been stolen.

– Last month, Milwaukee, Wis., officials discovered at least seven felons employed as voter registration workers for ACORN and another affiliated group. They also uncovered a raft of problematic voter registration cards. The state GOP accused ACORN of attempting to enroll dead, imprisoned or imaginary people to voter rolls. Fraud has plagued ACORN’s Milwaukee chapter since the last election cycle.

– In Florida, in Orange County alone, ACORN workers turned in multiple copycat forms for six separate voters over the summer. According to the Miami Herald, “One individual had 21 duplicate applications.”

Election officials had flagged ACORN’s negligent practices several months ago, but it may be too late: In Orange, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, ACORN has signed up 135,000 new voters, nearly 60 percent of them registered as Democrats that constitute a fifth of all new voters in that region.

– In Ohio, large numbers of homeless people received free van and bus rides to register. Shelby Holliday, a reporter for Palestra.net, filmed ACORN shuttling prospects to the polls. She told me she spoke with one homeless woman who told her ACORN “told her who to vote for if she wanted a ‘better life,’ and told her not to worry about jury duty (one of the reasons this homeless woman didn’t want to register) because the government probably wouldn’t be able to track her down. She was registering with a temporary address.”

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