10/24/08

Crime Pays for ACORN, Obama

More ACORN stories: hereVoter-fraud stories: here

ACORN connects U.S. socialists: Obama, Organized Labor, Hollywood Left

In elections, appearances count. Think of the suspicion still surrounding the troves of ballots that kept surfacing in King County as votes were being recounted after the 2004 governor’s race.

That’s why ACORN’s blustering defenses of its sloppy voter-registration practices have gotten so aggravating. Its leaders continue to talk as if they’re doing the country a great service with a mismanaged registration drive that lets employees sign up the likes of “Mickey Mouse” and “Donald Duck.”

County officials in 11 states have reportedly found bogus voter applications submitted by the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Criminal investigations have been launched in at least two states.

It would be one thing if this were ACORN’s first offense. But it got caught doing precisely the same thing in 2006 in King and Pierce counties, where its canvassers registered, among others, “Veronica Mars” and “Pat Tillman” – who had been killed in Afghanistan two years earlier. Some of the ACORN employees involved have since been convicted.

ACORN says the canvassers in question aren’t trying to perpetrate election fraud; they’re trying to get paid for gathering legitimate applications when they aren’t actually out doing the necessary work.

That is no doubt true. It’s also true that “Mickey Mouse” isn’t going to wind up voting in November. Election workers aren’t that stupid.

But there’s a reason fraudulent registration is a crime. It undermines the integrity of the system and creates public perceptions of tainted elections.

Because ACORN is an openly political, left-leaning organization, Republicans can reasonably suspect an illegal scheme to elect Democrats.

This cuts both ways. In California on Saturday, police arrested a man running a registration drive on behalf of the state Republican Party. According to investigators, his company, Young Political Majors, had been duping citizens into registering as Republicans.

As in ACORN’s case, it looks as if YPM were trying to collect for work not done. Regardless, neither Democrats nor Republicans can be expected to sit still for such fraud.

ACORN has little excuse, given its experience in Pierce and King counties. If its practices create incentives for fraudulent applications, those incentives should have been changed long before its current registration drive got under way.

At this late date, ACORN can’t wash its hands of fraud committed under its auspices in perhaps 11 states. The claim that its employees are beyond its control – perhaps operating in some other universe – has gotten old.

(thenewstribune.com)

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