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(How else are they gonna be able to 'win' elections at this point?)
By Brad Friedman
on 5/9/2009, 4:35pm PT
Can't tell you how sick I am of the GOP's ACORN nonsense, having long ago exhausted myself in debunking the entire GOP scam to try and use the group as a stalking horse to support their own insidious efforts at imposing polling place Photo ID restrictions in hopes of doing nothing more than keeping 20 to 30 million legal, largely Democratic-leaning voters from being able to cast their legal votes, because they don't own the type of ID that would be required to vote under these draconian, unnecessary, Jim Crow disenfranchisement laws.
But, as a quick perusal of recent 'Daily Voting News' articles will show, efforts are still being doubled, and redoubled, by the GOP in state legislatures across the country in hopes of passing such restrictions into law. It seems these laws, meant to combat non-existent "voter fraud," are the Republicans' last, best hope to be able to actually "win" elections at all these days.
So, with all of that in mind...here's the latest AP report on charges filed against ACORN workers in PA on Thursday, for falsifying voter registration forms.
As I replied to the person who sent me the link, please note in the poorly reported story: "There's no evidence anybody voted illegally or was denied a vote because of the scam."
Further, "the scam" was carried out by workers, in violation of ACORN's policies (akin to workers at Wal-Mart stealing items off the shelf --- you'd hardly charge Wal-Mart with "theft" in that incident), and was discovered, in no small part, because ACORN themselves alerted authorities to "the scam," and cooperated with law enforcement in helping to bring charges against the fraudsters. Of course, that hasn't stopped Fox "News" from "reporting" the story as if ACORN themselves (versus their workers) had been charged.
ACORN workers "registered some 38,000 new voters in southwestern Pennsylvania...last year", according to the AP article. The charges now filed against 6 state workers (out of the group's 13,000 employees nationwide) involve 51 registration cards suspected of having been forged by the workers. And, again: "There's no evidence anybody voted illegally or was denied a vote because of the scam."
The ACORN thing is indeed a "scam," but not the one that the AP report --- and the GOP and Fox "News" opportunists hoping to use it to disenfranchise voters --- paint it as.
Readers of The BRAD BLOG likely already know all of the above. And so it bores me no end to have to keep pointing it out and re-reporting the same idiocy over and over again. But as the democracy-haters haven't given up on their insidious nonsense, I guess I have little choice but to keep pointing it out from time to time.
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READER COMMENTS ON
"The GOP's ACORN 'Voter Fraud' Scam Continues"
(8 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
said on 5/9/2009 @ 6:47 pm PT...
Brad, on the plus side, I noted that the AP article did report: "there's no evidence anybody voted illegally or was denied a vote because of the scam...." What it neglected to note is that it is ACORN itself which was the "victim" of fraud if it turns out it paid these workers for collecting signatures of non-existent voters.
I'm curious as to the AP statement that ACORN has been charged by the NV AG with having a "quota" in violation of NV election law. What's that all about?
COMMENT #2 [Permalink]
said on 5/9/2009 @ 7:44 pm PT...
COMMENT #3 [Permalink]
said on 5/9/2009 @ 8:15 pm PT...
I considered getting into that issue, but decided it was too far afield for what I had time to cover and the scope of this particular piece.
Was going to run ACORN's statement on the quotas issue, but decided not to for now. Since you've asked, however, here it is, in full, included in an email from ACORN's On-Line Communication's Direct Nathan Henderson-James who added in the email: "Rather than prosecute the 44 canvassers we ID’d as defrauding ACORN and our voter registration effort, they [the NV SoS] have stretched their interpretation of their 'don’t pay by the card' statute to the breaking point with a tortured set of indictments."
To: Friends of ACORN
From: Steven Kest, Executive Director
Re: News from Nevada
Date: May 4, 2009
Politicians in Nevada are at it again. Seven months after executing a carefully staged raid on the Las Vegas ACORN office - a publicity stunt purporting to gather evidence of “voter fraud” in ACORN’s 2008 voter registration drive - Nevada’s attorney general and secretary of state today announced that they were filing a complaint against ACORN and two voter registration managers. Specifically, the complaint alleges that ACORN implemented a “corporate mandated quota system,” and that bonuses were paid for exceeding this quota, in violation of a Nevada statute that prohibits payment based on the total number of registrations.
What the attorney general and secretary of state did NOT announce were any indictments against any of the 44 individual canvassers ACORN identified, as early as April 2008, as having submitted fraudulent applications to their supervisors. If Nevada officials were truly interested in protecting the integrity of the registration process they would cooperate with ACORN in seeking prosecution against these individuals. Instead, after seven months, the state of Nevada has chosen to divert attention from their failure and attempt to justify their attacks against ACORN with this ridiculous complaint.
If you were to work at a Bennigans making steaks and burgers, you would need to in fact make food to retain your employment. Even university professors must “publish or perish.” ACORN, like any business or professional organization, establishes standards for performance and a reasonable basis for evaluating its employees. For canvassers, who are paid by the hour to assist members of the public in completing voter registration applications, these expectations are based on the only measurement that makes sense: the number of complete and accurate voter registration applications a canvasser collects per shift. Based on years of experience conducting community-based voter registration drives, ACORN has established 20 applications per four-hour shift as a reasonable performance standard.
Performance standards do not represent a “quota,” or payment per registration, but simply a baseline for job performance. And, as the complaint itself makes clear, failing to meet this standard does not result in automatic termination. ACORN supervisors are trained to evaluate canvassers on a case-by-case basis, and are given wide latitude in determining the appropriate course of action for under-performing canvassers, ranging from re-training or reassignment to disciplinary action or dismissal.
Moreover, the statute invoked in the complaint does not even address such job performance standards, nor does it address the situation in the Nevada office, in which unauthorized but moderate bonuses (in the amount of five-dollars per shift) were awarded in September to canvassers who exceeded expectations. In fact, the poorly written statute merely states that it is illegal to pay anyone to register voters based on the total number of voters registered. ACORN canvassers are paid and evaluated by the hour. The absurd legal interpretation under which the complaint has been brought suggests that it is illegal for a voter registration drive to set ANY job performance standards for hourly employees, or to evaluate employees and hold them accountable. In effect, their interpretation of the law would make conducting a paid voter registration drive impossible.
Few states need active and effective voter registration drives more than Nevada, which rates 50th out of 51 states (including the District of Columbia) in voter registration rates. Over 900,000 of 1.6 million eligible Nevadans remain unregistered, including 106,000 of the state’s 199,000 eligible low-income residents. ACORN’s registration drive, by election officials’ own conservative estimate, resulted in over 23,000 new Nevada voters casting a ballot in the 2008 election.
There will surely be a fierce hue and cry in the media over these charges; for that is, after all, largely the point. We look forward to the opportunity to beat back these false claims. Meanwhile, ACORN members will continue to fight for quality affordable healthcare, for living wage jobs, and to stop home foreclosures. And yes, we will continue to fight for the government to do its job and provide a means for universal voter registration for every citizen.
COMMENT #4 [Permalink]
said on 5/10/2009 @ 1:24 am PT...
Isn't it the whole idea of the Pukes to curb donations to ACORN, by complicit CMSM bad publicity to try and run them out of business?
Of course along with the stricter ID laws and registration slamming.
Yeah, it never hurts to keep repeating this nonsense.
What does that tell you about a party that does this shit? Is this okay with everyone registered to vote in the R persuasion?
COMMENT #5 [Permalink]
said on 5/10/2009 @ 7:05 am PT...
Brad, didn't intend to dump extra work on you, but I'm glad you posted ACORN's statement so that it didn't leave the NV AG allegations unchallenged.
Looks like the NV AG has taken a page out of the Karl Rove playbook.
Thanks for the addition.
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
said on 5/10/2009 @ 1:41 pm PT...
The grotesque mis-portrayal of ACORN by the media is a testament to why we need to bring back the fairness doctrine.
COMMENT #7 [Permalink]
said on 5/10/2009 @ 2:14 pm PT...
WilbuRrr... ~ Howdaya think I'd look in hose,like fishnets... Hmmm..."A stalking horse" . . .
COMMENT #8 [Permalink]
said on 5/13/2009 @ 3:31 pm PT...
Keep drinking your liberal kool - aid. ACORN has been known for fraud for years. Time to stick up for illegality regardless of your political leanings. I am a Libertarian and believe in the rule of law. Shame that the spineless media are afraid of where this might end and can't get behind a legitimate story. It is also a shame that bloggers like you can't see through your political visor and demand the rule of law is upheld. Oh well, enjoy the kool – aid. Baaaaa Baaaaa ...
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