April 9th, 2009
04:23 PM ET
6 years ago

RNC points to ACORN, 2010 census to fundraise

The RNC sent out a fundraising e-mail Thursday that focuses on the 2010 census and the community organizing group ACORN.
The RNC sent out a fundraising e-mail Thursday that focuses on the 2010 census and the community organizing group ACORN.

(CNN) – New Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele is ripping a page from the GOP's 2008 playbook.

In a fundraising e-mail sent to supporters Thursday, Steele looks to link community organizing group ACORN with the 2010 census which the new administration will conduct.

"It seems the Obama Administration has plans to rig the Census results," Steele says in the message.

"President Obama's old friends from ACORN . . . has [sic] been chosen by the Administration as a 'partner' with the Census Bureau to determine population counts in cities around the country."

"ACORN's community organizers are eager to once again take action to aid their old friend in the White House," says Steele. "You can be sure they'll be manipulating population numbers."

In a statement to CNN, Bertha Lewis, ACORN's chief organizer, denies Steele's assertions.

"I am disappointed in Mr. Steele's repetition of lies and distortions about our work for crass fundraising purposes," Lewis says. "ACORN is not getting billions from the federal government. We are not in charge of the Census. Just like the accusations of 'voter fraud,' – charges that were debunked repeatedly – these are imaginary and false. The truth is that ACORN is deeply engaged in ending the foreclosure crisis."

During the 2008 White House race, the GOP repeatedly suggested that ACORN and its employees were involved in voter registration fraud that might benefit Barack Obama, then the Democrat nominee for president. The accusation was subsequently leveled at ACORN by the McCain-Palin campaign, which also suggested ties between Obama, his campaign, and the community organizing group.

Both ACORN and the Obama campaign denied engaging in voter registration fraud.


The 2010 census is shaping up to be a partisan battleground between Obama's administration and Republicans. In part over differences about how the next national head count should be conducted, New Hampshire GOP Sen. Judd Gregg withdrew his name from further consideration to be Obama's Commerce Secretary.

Some congressional Republicans also recently criticized University of Michigan Prof. Robert M. Groves, Obama's pick for census director. Groves worked for the Census Bureau during the last census in 1990, and recommended at that time that the head count be statistically adjusted to compensate for a possible undercount of millions of Americans.


Filed under: ACORN • Census • Michael Steele • Obama administration • RNC
soundoff (166 Responses)
  1. artemisios

    "New Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele is ripping a page from the GOP's 2008 playbook." Yes, by all means. It worked so well in 2008, didn't it?

    April 9, 2009 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  2. Jer

    This only proves that if you keep throwing crap against the wall, some of it might actually stick. Wouldn't it be nice if ACORN took the RNC to court to challenge these charges?

    April 9, 2009 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  3. Lee

    To quote the Republican's St. Reagan, "There you go again."

    Why must the Republicans always resort to this type of nonsense? Steele has the opportunity to turn things around for the Republicans and focus the party on what it claims are its values, but instead he resorts to simple-minded fear mongering. If all Steele and the Republicans hope to reach is the Republican base they don’t have to utter one word, they already have the base. If they are trying to attract independents, moderate Republicans and Democrats they have no clue what it takes. They are so afflicted by their phobias and “isms” that they cannot rise up and present anything new to draw people to them.

    While I am reluctant to call Steele an Uncle Tom, I certainly do believe he is mediocre at best and not up to the job. He can forget further pursuit of a career in politics in Maryland, he has nothing to offer.

    April 9, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  4. susie

    Detroit, Michigan has more registered voters than they have residents.

    April 9, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  5. Lee

    To quote the Republican's St. Reagan, "There you go again." Why must the Republicans always resort to this type of nonsense? Steele has the opportunity to turn things around for the Republicans and focus the party on what it claims are its values, but instead he resorts to simple-minded fear mongering. If all Steele and the Republicans hope to reach is the Republican base they don’t have to utter one word, they already have the base. If they are trying to attract independents, moderate Republicans and Democrats they have no clue what it takes. They are so afflicted by their phobias and “isms” that they cannot rise up and present anything new to draw people to them.

    While I am reluctant to call Steele an Uncle Tom, I certainly do believe he is mediocre at best and not up to the job. He can forget further pursuit of a career in politics in Maryland, he has nothing to offer.

    April 9, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  6. debinaz

    doesnt the government get it ? we dont want to give acorn our money...they dare not come here to arizona to demand sheriff joe step down either.... at least sheriff joe is trying to enforce the laws of the land.... we want the borders here in arizona closed...obama wants everyone legal? more drugs more crime...he ought to live in one of the states that border mexico......

    April 9, 2009 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  7. Joanna

    The Republicans have the gall to bring up "rigging" an outcome? Wow......just...wow.

    April 9, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  8. James

    Libs are calling Steele Uncle Tom......really are you going there!

    It is time to drop these silly elegances to our skin color.

    April 9, 2009 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  9. Jeff

    I smell a GOP rat here trying to interfere with the census in order to distort or misrepresent the information gathered. This is standard GOP tactics...Create a fake issue...use the media to propagate it and create fear among an ill-informed populous...blame someone else for a fake issue...infiltrate and interfere...claim they did something good for America while covertly protecting their agenda for the wealthy. Sorry GOP I/ we know your Nazi and Stasi tactics. I'm wrong or paranoid you think? Well then be sure to remember the innocent non-terrorist people who were abducted post 9/11, as well as on government dissident lists, had their communications taped into, et al without due process by law. Yes, perhaps it protected us to a degree, but the privacy of many many lives were compromised. And think, HAVE YOU EVER REALLY BEEN FREE? No. You are controlled (or at least manipulated) by government, by media, by business, and by religion. Wake up...begin to think for yourself and truly be free.

    April 9, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  10. James

    It was ok for Obama and the DNC to claim that the Repubs were led by Rush in order to raise money? Can't see the hypocrisy?

    April 9, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  11. Lisa P

    Same old cr@p from the same old losers at the GOP. Does this surprise anyone?

    April 9, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. Sue M

    Everytime someone from the GOP opens their mouth, the more people they turn away......

    April 9, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  13. mark

    Acorn is being investigated, to bad the BO media lovers don't look into this. CHANGE will happen.........................

    April 9, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  14. James

    Real simple ...stop giving Acorn taxpayer money. Period!

    April 9, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  15. James

    Funny how for the first time a President is taking the census into the Whitehouse? Why?

    April 9, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  16. David

    I have never seen such a high volume of lies and sheer stupidity coming from a political party. Wow, just wow.

    The Republicans better stop the nonsense and start coming up with practical ideas that help Americans. If not, they're going to be the Whig party of this century. Bye bye GOP.

    April 9, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  17. Chaun

    Acorn is not neutral as they should be. I'm refinancing my home since the rates are so low and it sickens me that they get a chunk of my mortgage. To use our money to influence voting and to hire paid protestors to protest the AIG employees was rediculous beyond words. Whoever organized that should be fired!

    April 9, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  18. tim

    this is nothing like obama saying that reublicans were led by rush limbaugh. that was an assessment of the state of the GOP, this is an all out lie trying to accuse obama of a crime that is completely ridiculous. why would someone with more than 60% of america backing him need to rig the elections

    April 9, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  19. Veronica

    Yawn. Yanking out the "ACORN" boogie man, again. I think it's time the repuglicant's update their playbook ... this is so oooooold.

    April 9, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  20. DJW

    Michael Steele forgot about his mis givings in Maryland -he solicited false statements saying he was a Steele Democrate and he handed out flyers saying that the African Americans politicians was supporting him and they were not.

    He has nerve but most Repubs are liar's anyway!!

    April 9, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  21. Brandon

    Can this man screw up his party any more? I love it. Keep speaking, Steele, please; you give the Democrats more ammunition with every ridiculous assertion.

    April 9, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  22. mellow

    How on eart can ACORN claim they didn't submit THOUSANDS of false voter registrations??? And for this goon running acorn...ummm, sorry to break it to you, but that's voter fraud!

    April 9, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  23. boered1

    @longhorn
    the census is the driving factor behind the number of representatives a state gets and used to help define the various districts within a state and therefore can determine the percentages of republicans and democrats (say the population in Utah is over counted giving it two more representatives and the population of Vermont is undercounted giving it one less representative, Utah tends to vote republican so they gain two seats, vermont tends to vote democratic so they would lose two seat, making an overall shift of three seats, magnify this over the country and it can have some huge effects on the balance of power within the Congress)

    April 9, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  24. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    The other day, ACORN's CEO denied the intolerable Lou Dobbs' assertion that it was being investigated by "several states" but blathered on about "no DOJ investigation" and didn't respond to his claim about states. What are the facts, CNN?

    April 9, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  25. WAW

    No! No! No! That's how we vote. By the way, those other guys are all pinkie liberals who kill babies and all sorts of mean things. We just lie and lie and vote No! We don't have any plans, any solutions because we just want to be rich. We know that you know that we don't know but we keep telling you how good we are. We are the party of the true South, of the true Christians, of the true Americans, of the true lie.

    Sorry guys, you can make fools out yourselves if you want, but you are not even funny anymore. Too bad, because so many good people really wanted to believe you. Newt's new party is waiting.

    April 9, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
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