It's all ACORN -- all the time.
Much has been happening in the wacky world of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now in recent days.
Longtime ACORN ally Rep. John Conyers (D-Michigan) backed out of the congressional probe of the group he promised. The Washington Examiner's Kevin Mooney has the story and quotes me in it. Mooney is slated to be on the "Glenn Beck Program" to talk about ACORN at 5 p.m. Eastern today.
I have a longer piece on the same topic right here at the American Spectator. GOP lawyer Heather Heidelbaugh testified in Congress about ACORN's many misdeeds and Conyers said at the time the allegations were "a pretty serious matter."
Heidelbaugh testified the nonprofit group violated a host of tax, campaign finance, and other laws. She said the presidential campaign of Barack Obama sent ACORN its "maxed out donor list" and asked two of the avowedly nonpartisan group's employees "to reach out to the maxed out donors and solicit donations from them for Get Out the Vote efforts to be run by ACORN."
Heidelbaugh said the New York Times had the donor list story but editors there spiked it the month before the election, a claim she repeated on "The O'Reilly Factor" two weeks later. The newspaper told the Philadelphia-based Bulletin that "political considerations played no role in our decisions about how to cover this story or any other story about President Obama."
Heidelbaugh's star witness is former ACORN employee Anita MonCrief. MonCrief maintains a blog where she tells her story and reflects on all the latest goings-on with ACORN.
Mooney discovered that ACORN has received at least $53.6 million in federal funds since 1994. The sum is probably much higher but this sort of information is very difficult to track. Moreover, the ACORN network consists of more than 100 affiliates and those affiliates routinely transfer money to each other. He also reported that ACORN and other liberal advocacy groups could get as much as $8.5 billion from the February stimulus bill and fiscal 2010 budget.
It's old news by now that Nevada charged ACORN and two former senior ACORN officials with election fraud Monday, but just today it was learned that Pennsylvania authorities have charged seven ACORN workers with election fraud.
Rep. Michele Bachmann's (R-Minnesota) bid to keep an anti-ACORN funding provision in a mortgage reform bill went down in flames but not without embarrassing House Financial Services Committee chairman Barney Frank (D-Massachusetts) first.
CNSNews reported some people are worried about the fact that ACORN has signed up to be a partner in the 2010 U.S. Census.
From the you-win-some-you-lose-some-file, a judge has recommended that the Buckeye Institute of Ohio's state racketeering lawsuit against ACORN be dismissed.
In the Manhattan Institute's City Journal, Steven Malanga has an article called "Obsessive Housing Disorder." He explains ACORN's role in lowering lending standards, which housing activists denounced as racist and unfair. This lowering of the standards contributed to the subprime mortgage meltdown.
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