7/24/08

ACORN sidesteps misuse of public funds

More ACORN stories: here

Congress set to bail out voter-fraud group

James Terry, Chief Public Advocate for the Consumers Rights League (CRL), released the following statement today expressing disappointment with the White House for dropping its opposition to the massive housing bill that will likely pass the U.S. House of Representatives today that includes, among other egregious provisions, more than $230 million for housing counseling -- a bailout for Wall Street and a payoff to organizations like the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) which is engaged in questionable practices and the potential misuse of public funds:

James Terry, Chief Public Advocate, Consumers Rights League (CRL):
"This is a sham bill that rewards Wall Street bankers at the expense of American consumers. And because the White House will likely sign this bad bill, this country's next group of speculators will be looking to Washington for a bailout when their investment doesn't pay.

"Equally as troubling, this legislation will pump tens, if not hundreds, of millions of dollars into ACORN and its affiliate, the ACORN Housing Council (AHC). Because of that, these groups must be held accountable for not only their histories of questionable practices but for how they will spend this massive cash influx funded by American taxpayers. Appropriate oversight has not been established and as we've recently seen, the opportunities for fraud within ACORN are rampant. Just last week, the chief organizer of ACORN was forced to resign over the cover-up of a $1 million embezzlement scandal involving his brother.

"As internal whistleblower documents recently revealed, ACORN and its offshoots may have reaped substantial financial gains by misusing taxpayer dollars for political ends and by attacking lending corporations for the same so-called 'predatory' lending practices ACORN regularly engages in. ACORN has also been under fire for reports of voter fraud. With this bill likely on its way to the president's desk, this is an excellent moment for Chairman Frank to heed the current calls for investigation and focus his attention on groups like ACORN and AHC.

"In the interest of ensuring responsible use of taxpayer dollars, Congress should be asking some serious questions about ACORN's activities instead of blindly pumping millions of taxpayer dollars into these potentially corrupt organizations. This bill is a bad start -- but there is still time for Congress and investigators to do the right thing and protect consumers."
(marketwatch.com)

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