The New York Times woke up and published a story regarding ACORN that speaks to the kinds of problems that ACORN watchers have been discussing.
Project Vote and ACORN are so closely tied together that it seems difficult to say Project Vote hasn’t done partisan work. In addition, the Consumers Rights League has sworn affidavits from 4 former ACORN workers accusing ACORN Housing of funneling money to ACORN’s voter registration efforts.
The Times article is based on an internal report filed by Elizabeth Kingsley. In reviewing how ACORN actually functions, she found reasons for concern.
The June 18 report, written by Elizabeth Kingsley, a Washington lawyer, spells out her concerns about potentially improper use of charitable dollars for political purposes; money transfers among the affiliates; and potential conflicts created by employees working for multiple affiliates, among other things.
Ms. Kingsley’s concerns about the way Acorn affiliates work together could fuel the controversy over Acorn’s voter registration efforts, which are largely underwritten by an affiliated charity, Project Vote. Project Vote hires Acorn to do voter registration work on its behalf, and the two groups say they have registered 1.3 million voters this year.
As a federally tax-exempt charity, Project Vote is subject to prohibitions on partisan political activity. But Acorn, which is a nonprofit membership corporation under Louisiana law, though subject to federal taxation, is not bound by the same restrictions.
Barack Obama said on his website that he never organized for ACORN but he did for Project Vote. This report provides rationale for those who say Obama is splitting hairs.