McCain talking points on ACORN

Statement by McCain-Palin spokesman Michael Goldfarb on
Barack Obama and ACORN:

“Just one week ago, the Obama campaign declared that ‘Barack Obama never organized with ACORN.’ According to today’s New York Times, that statement is simply not true. The paper quotes Barack Obama on his role as head of Project Vote and says the statement ‘linked his 1992 work to ACORN in a meeting with ACORN’s leaders in November.’ In fact, Barack Obama has a long relationship with ACORN, to which he and unrepentant terrorist William Ayers funneled nearly $200,000 from the Woods Foundation, and as recently as February of this year his campaign paid nearly $1 million to an ACORN affiliate for services related to get out the vote efforts. It is clear that Barack Obama is not being honest about his association with ACORN, just as he has not been honest about his association with unrepentant terrorist William Ayers. The media has an obligation to
investigate the obvious contradictions between Barack Obama’s rhetoric and his record.” –Michael Goldfarb, McCain-Palin Spokesman

The Obama Campaign Claims That Barack Obama Never Organized With ACORN

The Obama Campaign: “Barack Obama Never Organized With ACORN” (Barack Obama For President Website,, Accessed 10/4/08)

FACT: ACORN Has Endorsed Barack Obama For President

ACORN’s Political Action Committee Endorsed Barack Obama For President. “[A]CORN’s political action committee endorsed Barack Obama for President. … The endorsement reflects a belief that Obama – who worked as a community organizer on the South Side of Chicago – understands that change must come from the ground-up, as part of a working coalition,
rather than from position papers.” (Katrina Vanden Heuvel, Op-Ed, “ACORN: Obama Gets It,” The Nation, 2/23/08)

FACT: The Obama Campaign Paid More Than $800,000 To An ACORN Front Group
For Get-Out-The Vote Efforts

Barack Obama’s Campaign “Paid More Than $800,000” To ACORN For Get-Out-The Vote Efforts; The Campaign Originally “Misrepresented” The Group’s Work To The FEC. “U.S. Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign paid more than $800,000 to an offshoot of the liberal
Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now for services the Democrat’s campaign says it mistakenly misrepresented in federal reports. An Obama spokesman said Federal Election Commission reports would be amended to show Citizens Services Inc. — a subsidiary of ACORN — worked in ‘get-out-the-vote’ projects, instead of activities such as polling, advance work and staging major events as stated in FEC finance reports filed during the primary.” (David M. Brown, “Obama To Amend Report On $800,000 In Spending,” Pittsburgh Tribune Review, 8/22/08)

FACT: Barack Obama Formerly Represented ACORN, Taught Classes For Future
Leaders Of ACORN, And They Endorsed His 2008 Presidential Campaign

Barack Obama Directed Project Vote And Later Taught Classes For “Future Leaders Identified By ACORN And The Centers For New Horizons.” “He [Obama] says he is drawn to politics, despite its superficialities, as a means to advance his real passion and calling: community organization.
… In 1992 Obama took time off to direct Project Vote, the most successful grass-roots voter-registration campaign in recent city history. Credited with helping elect Carol Moseley-Braun to the U.S. Senate, the registration drive, aimed primarily at African-Americans, added an estimated 125,000 voters to the voter rolls–even more than were registered during Harold Washington’s mayoral campaigns. ‘It’s a power thing,’ said the brochures and radio commercials. … Obama continues his organizing work largely through classes for future leaders identified by ACORN and the Centers for New Horizons on the south side.” (Hank De Zutter, Op-Ed, “What Makes Obama Run?” Chicago Reader, 12/8/95)

Barack Obama Was Part Of Team Of Lawyers Who Represented ACORN In A Suit Against The State Of Illinois. “Obama was part of a team of attorneys who represented the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) in a lawsuit against the state of Illinois in 1995 for failing to implement a federal law designed to make it easier for the poor and others to register as voters.” (Mike Robinson, “Obama Got Start In Civil Rights Practice,” The Associated Press, 2/20/07)

Barack Obama Was Invited By Madeleine Talbot To Help Train Her Staff At ACORN. “Several community organizers and Altgeld Gardens tenants confirmed Johnson was working on asbestos but said Obama organized residents to act. ‘He got people to vote with their feet’ on the issue,
organizer Madeleine Talbot said. At the time, Talbot worked at the social action group ACORN and initially considered Obama a competitor. But she became so impressed with his work that she invited him to help train her staff.” (Letta Tayler And Keith Herbert, “Chicago’s Streets
Obama’s Teacher,” Newsday, 3/2/08)

In 1992, Barack Obama Was Hired By ACORN To Run A Voter Registration Effort. “Indeed, Mr. Obama has extensive connections with the granddaddy of activist groups, Acorn (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), which has gotten millions in government grants for its low-income housing programs. In 1992, Acorn hired Mr. Obama to run a voter registration effort. He later became a trainer for the group, as well as its lawyer in election law cases. Acorn’s political arm has endorsed Mr. Obama while its ‘voter education’ arm has pledged to spend $35 million to register people this fall — despite a history of vote fraud scandals that have led to guilty pleas by many Acorn employees.” (John Fund, “Obama’s Liberal Shock Troops,” The Wall Street Journal,7/12/08)

FACT: ACORN Received Grants From The Woods Fund When Barack Obama Served
on The Board Of Directors

The Chicago ACORN Received Grants Of $45,000 (2000), $30,000 (2001), $45,000 (2001), $30,000 (2002), And $40,000 (2002) From The Woods Fund. (Donors Forum Website, , Accessed 6/10/08)

NOTE: From 1993 To 2002, Barack Obama Served On The Board Of Directors For The Woods Fund. (Tim Novak and Fran Spielman, “Obama Helped Ex-Boss Get $1 Mil. From Charity,” Chicago Sun-Times, 11/29/07)

FACT: There Are Currently At Least 11 Investigations Into ACORN

FOX News’ Eric Shawn: “But There Are At Least 11 Investigations Across The Country Involving Thousands Of Potentially Fraudulent ACORN Forms.” (FOX News’ “Special Report,” 10/8/08)

FACT: ACORN Encouraged Risky Home Loans

ACORN Led Protests At Banks To Force Them To Issue Risky Home Loans. “Various ACORN chapters across the country, led by folks like Chicago’s Madeline Talbott, staged in-your-face protests in bank lobbies and filed complaints meant to hold up mergers sought by targeted banking firms. Talbott & Co. generally wanted them to ease down-payment requirements and ignore weak credit histories. And their intimidating tactics often necessitated police action, as at a ’97 protest at Pulaski Bank & Trust in Arkansas, where activists blocked drive-through lanes.” (Editorial, “The Meltdown’s Acorn,” New York Post, 9/29/08)

ACORN Forced Banks To Issue Shaky Loans By Pressuring The Banks. “ACORN recognized very early the opportunity presented by the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) of 1977. As Stanley Kurtz has reported, ACORN proudly touted ‘affirmative action’ lending and pressured banks to make subprime loans. Madeline Talbott, a Chicago ACORN leader, boasted of ‘dragging banks kicking and screaming’ into dubious loans. And, as Sol Stern reported in City Journal, ACORN also found a remunerative niche as an ‘advisor’ to banks seeking regulatory approval.” (Mona Charen, “Guilty Party: ACORN, Obama, and the mortgage mess,” National Review Online, 9/30/08)