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Congress Stomps Down and Kicks Some Butt.

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September 23, 2009 – Comments (12)

In a bold courageous act, inspired by nothing less than Glenn Beck investigative reporting, Congress strikes a blow for Justice and passes legislation banning the funding of ACORN.

Of course, in America laws apply to all, equally. It is un-Constitutuional to pass a law targeting any specific individual or organization, as it should be.

Because it is politically helpful to the GOP to punish the entire ACORN organization for the acts of a few tax cheats (are you listening Ernst and Young?) right now, the GOP beat the self-rightous plowshare into a mighty sword and wrote H.R.3571. And because it is politically safe to jump on the self-rightous bandwagon the Dems joined the GOP and passed H.R.3571, 345-71.

H.R 3571 is a bill that skips the trial part of an accusation and goes straight to levying of punishment.

A Bill:

To prohibit the Federal Government from awarding contracts, grants, or other agreements to, providing any other Federal funds to, or engaging in activities that promote certain indicted organizations.

In order to be Constitutional you cannot say: To prohibit the Federal Government from awarding contracts, grants, or other agreements to, providing any other Federal funds to, or engaging in activities that promote ACORN. You have to say "certain indicted organizations".

In fact, since this is a very short bill, I'll copy it below.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,



 

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the ‘Defund ACORN Act’.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

SEC. 2. PROHIBITIONS ON FEDERAL FUNDS AND OTHER ACTIVITIES WITH RESPECT TO CERTAIN INDICTED ORGANIZATIONS. 

(1) No Federal contract, grant, cooperative agreement, or any other form of agreement (including a memorandum of understanding) may be awarded to or entered into with the organization.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(2) No Federal funds in any other form may be provided to the organization.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(3) No Federal employee or contractor may promote in any way (including recommending to a person or referring to a person for any purpose) the organization.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

 

(A) employs any applicable individual, in a permanent or temporary capacity;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(B) has under contract or retains any applicable individual; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(C) has any applicable individual acting on the organization’s behalf or with the express or apparent authority of the organization.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

1(1) Any organization that has been indicted for a violation under any Federal or State law governing the financing of a campaign for election for public office or any law governing the administration of an election for public office, including a law relating to voter registration.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink

 

(2) Any organization that had its State corporate charter terminated due to its failure to comply with Federal or State lobbying disclosure requirements.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(3) Any organization that has filed a fraudulent form with any Federal or State regulatory agency.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(4) Any organization that--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

 

(A) Any State chapter of ACORN registered with the Secretary of State’s office in that State.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(B) Any organization that shares directors, employees, or independent contractors with ACORN.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(C) Any organization that has a financial stake in ACORN.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(D) Any organization whose finances, whether federally funded, donor-funded, or raised through organizational goods and services, are shared or controlled by ACORN.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

1(1) The term ‘organization’ includes the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (in this subsection referred to as ‘ACORN’) and any ACORN-related affiliate.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink

 

(2) The term ‘ACORN-related affiliate’ means any of the following:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(3) The term ‘applicable individual’ means an individual who has been indicted for a violation under Federal or State law relating to an election for Federal or State office.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(a) Prohibitions- With respect to any covered organization, the following prohibitions apply:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(b) Covered Organization- In this section, the term ‘covered organization’ means any of the following:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(c) Additional Definitions- In this section:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink



 

(d) Revision of Federal Acquisition Regulation- The Federal Acquisition Regulation shall be revised to carry out the provisions of this Act relating to contracts.

 

Because it is fun, and educational, people have begun putting lists together of organizations to whom this bill applies.Freshman Representative Alan Grayson, who thinks the law matters, has set up a spreadsheet where you can add any organization that you believe should have funds withheld under H.R 3571 and add a link to the story or court record of the reason. Someone beat me to Pfizer.

12 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On September 23, 2009 at 11:47 PM, ChrisGraley (29.85) wrote:

Where will the funding for Ebonics come from?

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#2) On September 23, 2009 at 11:51 PM, Option1307 (29.81) wrote:

Because it is politically helpful to the GOP to punish the entire ACORN organization for the acts of a few tax cheats

Really? Don't you think we should stop funding this organization until they can be investigated. This isn't the first time this organization has been accused of shady practices. Voter fraud cases have been around for yrs. and now all the new allegations. So, we shouldn't we stop federal funds to them and excuse them from the 2010 census? We should.

If, after an investigation it turns that only a select few bad apples were present, no problem. They can resume business as usual. They aren't being punished, it's our federal funds, we should be able to do whatever we want with them.

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#3) On September 24, 2009 at 12:02 AM, ChrisGraley (29.85) wrote:

I forgot which party controlled both legislative branches and the executive branch again!

Could someone remind me?

I'm not an expert on tax evasion, but I'm pretty sure that racketeering, sex slavery and voter fraud fall into different categories.

Then again if Nancy Pelosi says that they are good people, they must be good people.

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#4) On September 24, 2009 at 2:52 AM, FleaBagger (29.00) wrote:

Isn't it unconstitutional to provide federal funds to a specific organization? Oh, no wait: that would be too much like right. So whoever bribes congress gets 10, 100, or 1000x as much back in federal dough.

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#5) On September 24, 2009 at 4:00 AM, AbstractMotion (53.98) wrote:

Congress shouldn't be funding special interest groups period.  When the government starts paying an organization to register voters you immediately have a conflict of interest, period.  Congress has already pretty much decided it can make any demands of an organization it has given money to with the banks, did you really think that wouldn't extend into other areas devoish?  At any rate I don't think the core causes behind ACORN at it's establishment are bad, but as long as they're registering voters they shouldn't be getting funding from the government.  The same goes to any right wing organizations that might fall into that category.

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#6) On September 24, 2009 at 7:33 AM, devoish (98.21) wrote:

#1,

Ebonics was indicted for something?

#2 through #5,

No Federal contract, grant, cooperative agreement, or any other form of agreement (including a memorandum of understanding) may be awarded to or entered into with any indicted organization, that employs or contracts with any indicted individual or organization, or files any fraudulent form, Federal or State.

Seems to me this puts an awful lot of Goverment contractors out of business.

Perhaps the bill should be renamed the "End of Governement Subcontracting act".

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#7) On September 24, 2009 at 8:54 AM, lemoneater (77.78) wrote:

Devoish, what would you have done about the bad ACORNs? I believe there needs to be something in place that will keep any organization or bank from misusing taxpayer funds with impunity. If our government was wiser to begin with where and how it allocated funds then it wouldn't have to come in later with heavy handed legislation. Also anyone who takes government funds shouldn't get indignant if one is held accountable. Government money is never free. There are always strings somewhere.

Also why didn't ACORN do its own housecleaning or have its own policies in place in to prevent potential abuses of this nature? Whatever happened to business ethics or proper professionalism? Reputation is worth something. Why give ammunition to one's opponents.

Interesting topic. 1 rec.  

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#8) On September 24, 2009 at 1:20 PM, Alex1963 (28.56) wrote:

Good thing we have never extended this for KMR who continue to get contracts while being investigated for deaths of soldiers. Or Blackwater (no Xe). I could on with other dozens more examples. To me the bottom line is that ACORN does not enough political influence to protect themselves while these other Cos are so imbedded they can literally get away with murder.

Republicans: the party of political expediency. Democrats: too cowardly to point this out.

We'd better get a good healthcare bill for all this appeasement.

Good post devoish rec

Alex 

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#9) On September 24, 2009 at 4:20 PM, devoish (98.21) wrote:

Devoish, what would you have done about the bad ACORNs?

Tried them for tax evasion, promoting promiscuity, or whatever else applies, and punished them according to the law.

Anything else is un-Constitutional right?

Also why didn't ACORN do its own housecleaning or have its own policies in place in to prevent potential abuses of this nature?

ACORN fired the people in the videos, so I guess they cleaned house. ACORN also claims ACORN employees in other offices called the police on the pimp and the prostitute.

Honestly, I am not trying to defend ACORN here. I think this is almost a great law and should stand and be agressively enforced until all recipients of taxpayer dollars including military contractors, banks, road crews or lunch ladies, understand that breaking the law will guarantee forfiture of that income.

Just because it took a partisan attack on ACORN to pass such a law, makes it funny.

Of course if you apply this law to yourself, you may think there should be a conviction first, and I would certainly prefer to see the law changed in that respect.

Perhaps there should be standards that allow reinstatement for the organization. Maybe a five year "no new contracts" period, and/or the requirement that all top executives be replaced before an organization such as Lockheed Martin with its twenty convictions of wrongdoing can get new Gov't contracts.

No. I like this law, it just needs to require convictions instead of indictments.

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#10) On September 28, 2009 at 8:19 AM, garyc27 (< 20) wrote:

I think this is almost a great law and should stand and be agressively enforced until all recipients of taxpayer dollars including military contractors, banks, road crews or lunch ladies, understand that breaking the law will guarantee forfiture of that income.

I agree.  Good post +1 Rec

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#11) On September 29, 2009 at 4:00 PM, Alex1963 (28.56) wrote:

Here's a link to Rachel Maddow who has been doing some digging on the GOP targeting of ACORN. It includes an interview with David Iglasias (former Justice Dept attorney) who recounts how he was reapeatedly and improperly pressured to pursue vote fraud charges involving ACORN for which, after thoroughly investigating, he could find no merit.

If you are supportive of the witch hunt against ACORN based on the facts you have BUT you have an open mind check out this 11 min piece.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26315908/#33064799 

Best

Alex 

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#12) On September 29, 2009 at 4:22 PM, topsecret09 (36.83) wrote:

 ACORN Housing Corporation’s criminal-enabling home loan program for illegal aliens. To paraphrase Jon Stewart: Where the hell is everyone?

AHC is one of the endless non-profit arms of ACORN.

There’s one thing more shocking than the illegal alien smuggling advice that an ACORN official in San Diego gave undercover journalists James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles. It’s the illegal alien criminal racket that ACORN has already been operating with the full knowledge of the U.S. government.

On Wednesday, O’Keefe and Giles published the fifth in a series of BigGovernment.com sting videos. ACORN official Juan Carlos Vera coached the pimp-and-prostitute-posing pair on how best to pull off a border-busting smuggling operation. It would be “better from Tijuana,” he counseled on videotape. Carlos Vera then generously offered the investigative couple his Mexican “contacts” to bring 12 illegal alien girls into the country for prostitution.

GOP California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger now wants an investigation. But neither the Terminator nor any other California public officials raised a peep when the very same San Diego ACORN office publicly announced a partnership with Citibank to secure home loans for illegal aliens. In 2005, Citibank and ACORN Housing Corporation – which has received tens of millions of tax dollars under the Bush administration alone — began recruiting Mexican illegal aliens for a lucrative program offering loans with below-market interest rates, down-payment assistance and no mortgage insurance requirements. Instead of Social Security numbers required of law-abiding citizens, the program allows illegal alien applicants to supply loosely-monitored tax identification numbers issued by the IRS.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that “undocumented residents” comprise a vast market representing a potential sum of “$44 billion in mortgages.” Citibank enlarged its portfolio of subprime and other risky loans. ACORN enlarged its membership rolls. The program now operates in Miami; New York City; Jersey City, N.J.; Baltimore; Washington, D.C.; Chicago; Bridgeport, Conn., and at all of ACORN Housing’s 12 California offices. San Diego ACORN officials advised illegal alien recruits that their bank partners would take applicants who had little or no credit, or even “nontraditional records of credit, such as utility payments and documentation of private loan payments.”

The risk the banks bear is the price they pay to keep ACORN protesters and Hispanic lobbyists from the National Council of La Raza screaming about “predatory lending” off their backs. These professional grievance-mongers have turned the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act – which forced lenders to sacrifice underwriting standards for “diversity” – into lucrative “business” opportunities. Or rather, politically correct blackmail. As the Consumer Rights League noted in a 2008 report on the group’s successful shakedowns of financial institutions, “an agreement with Citibank, a significant ACORN donor and partner, showed that some activists become less active when deals are in place.”

In the wake of the sting videos, ACORN officials are making a great show of clamoring for “reform.” ACORN chief executive Bertha Lewis blamed the debacles across the country on the “indefensible action of a handful of our employees.” But the corruption is systemic. ACORN has long thrown rank-and-file operatives under the bus to cover for its management’s indefensible conduct. And ACORN’s highly-touted advisory watchdogs include inherently conflicted foxes guarding the henhouse:

ACORN advisory council member Henry Cisneros resigned from his post as Clinton HUD Secretary after lying to FBI agents about payments to a former mistress.

ACORN advisory council member Andy Stern is president of the SEIU, the Big Labor organization plagued by embezzlement scandals and inextricably linked to ACORN’s disgraced founder Wade Rathke. (And see my document drop here on ACORN’s “nurturing” of SEIU Local 100.)

And ACORN advisory council member Eric Eve of Citigroup is a champion of the ACORN/Citibank illegal alien loan program that openly undermines immigration laws and integrity in banking.

The truth is more sordid than any fictional scenarios caught on tape: ACORN is a criminal enterprise.  TS

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