Friday, October 17, 2008

ACORN does good work, REPUBLICANS commit voter suppression

In a desperate attempt to suppress voter turnout, the McCain campaign has accused ACORN, a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots community organization of low- and moderate-income people committed to social and economic justice, of voter fraud!

Here's what he's not telling you:

--The only fraud committed was against ACORN itself. ACORN hired 13,000 workers to register a remarkable 1.3 million new voters. And a few of them turned in registration forms with inaccurate and even made-up names to get credit for work they didn't do. ACORN fired them and turned them over to the authorities.

--ACORN reported the fraudulent registration forms. In most states, ACORN is required by law to submit all forms collected whether they appear to be bogus or not—that way election officials, not partisan groups, can make the call. ACORN flags cards that may not be legitimate. And in many places, the charges of fraud only came up because ACORN was the one who flagged the cards!

--This won't have any impact on the election. No one is allowed to vote unless they are properly registered. And there is no evidence of false registrations actually leading to organized voting fraud.

ACORN has dedicated Quality Control staff which calls the person listed on every card to verify information.

--ACORN alerts election officials whenever its Quality Control staff find a card that appears to be a duplicate or problematic.

--In most states, the law requires that every signed card be turned into election officials, even if it is fake or incomplete.
ACORN is now being attacked by partisan officials over problematic cards that ACORN itself pointed out, in writing, to election officials.

--ACORN employed thousands of part-time canvassers to work on its voter registration drives, and most of these individuals did a great job.

In the relatively few cases where some canvassers have turned in bad voter registration cards, there has never been any evidence that so-called “voter fraud” was the motive.

As these cases prove, it is extraordinarily difficult to falsely register to vote, and fraudulent voting by individuals is extremely rare.

Rather, these cases appear to be nothing more than former part-time workers trying to get paid for doing work they didn’t do—like a store clerk shoplifting from his or her employer.

Behind the partisan attacks

The goals of the people orchestrating partisan attacks against are to distract ACORN from helping people vote and to justify massive voter suppression.

In 2004 and 2006, attacks against voter registration drives were orchestrated by political forces that have since been exposed by the U.S. Attorneygate scandal to have been working in conjunction with a politicized Department of Justice to push a partisan agenda of voter suppression.

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