October 16th, 2008
08:55 PM ET
13 years ago

McCain camp to Obama: Release more information about ACORN

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/16/art.macpt1016.gi.jpg caption="At the final presidential debate, Sen. McCain said ACORN might be destroying the fabric of democracy."]
(CNN) – In the wake of an Associated Press report that the FBI is reviewing the results of several state inquiries into the conduct of ACORN, Sen. John McCain’s campaign called Thursday for Sen. Barack Obama to release additional information about the relationship between the embattled community organizing group and the Obama campaign.

“Barack Obama’s campaign must fully disclose the nature of his association with ACORN,” McCain campaign manager Rick Davis said in a statement Thursday.

The Obama campaign took issue with the McCain campaign's request. "ACORN never performed any voter registration work for the Obama campaign and Senator McCain’s campaign knows this," the Obama campaign said in an e-mail to CNN. "The real question is why they continue to assert something that isn’t true, and why they believe that attacking a group that Senator McCain himself praised as 'what makes America special' helps their campaign."

Related: 'We don't need ACORN's help,' says Obama

CNN has been unable to confirm a report by the Associated Press that the FBI is investigating whether ACORN helped foster voter registration fraud across the country as the presidential election approaches. Instead, several government sources have told CNN that the FBI and the Justice Department are reviewing documents provided by state investigations into ACORN to determine whether there is a basis to open a federal criminal investigation.

These developments at the federal level come nearly a week after six Republicans in the House of Representatives sent a letter to Attorney General Michael Mukasey requesting a federal investigation into ACORN’s voter registration activities. All of the House members who signed the letter to Mukasey had previously administered elections as Secretaries of States.

In a statement Thursday, ACORN said that it has not been contacted by any federal law enforcement agencies. "Should any investigation be forthcoming, we are confident that we would be exonerated," the group said. "We have always, and will continue to, work with any inquiry."

Watch: ACORN counters fraud charges

At the final presidential debate, Sen. McCain challenged Sen. Obama to explain his relationship with ACORN, saying the group “is now on the verge of maybe perpetrating one of the greatest frauds in voter history in this country, maybe destroying the fabric of democracy." In response, Obama said his only involvement with the group was representing it in a lawsuit against the State of Illinois regarding a motor voter law.  A CNN Fact Check found Obama's claim to be false.

Earlier this week, Obama and senior officials from his campaign both said that the Obama campaign has its own voter registration efforts that are not related to ACORN’s recently completed voter registration drive.

Since the registration drive was recently completed, there have been several press reports of questionable or fraudulent voter registration forms submitted as a result of the drive.

Updated 8:55 pm to add comment from the Obama campaign.

–CNN Justice Department Producer Terry Frieden contributed to this report

Filed under: ACORN • Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • Voter Problems
soundoff (186 Responses)
  1. Rob tellerman

    Probably even the slanted and biased media will have to layoff lower load carrying personnel !!!

    October 16, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  2. Brian Sereaton

    Its a shame that supposed , upstanding members of your country should stoop to such depths as defamation to win political points. At this stage of the game, if policys integrity and character cant win it for you , you should nt be in it ! ! Palin

    October 16, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  3. AA

    How about this theory – Mccain and Palin did the ACORN fraud so that they could blame Obama for it. Well, they dont find it necessary to check the facts before blaming Obama for anything and everything. I might as well do the same 🙂 Besides, who knows .. I might be *right on the money*

    October 16, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  4. Mandy, NC

    Barack is responsible for everything if you let McCain tell it. It's his fault we're in this financial crisis, his fault we had Katrina, his fault there's voter registration fraud, his fault we can't get out of this war. Yes that Barack did everything to ruin this country and now we can't get anything right. Thank God the snake-eyed Rethuglicans are crouching in the corners ready to pounce, should Barack lose his leads in the polls. Like that's going to happen.

    I voted for Barack today and I can't tell you how much better I feel. I definitely did my part, and now I'll be waiting for America to do the right thing.

    Obama? Yes, yes we can.

    October 16, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  5. Chuck Lesker

    Who built Palin's house for free while they were also building that hockey arena? She must fully disclose that.

    October 16, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  6. stef

    McCain and Palin, shut the hell up, I wish Barrack will go after McCain and Palin, they are truly digging a hole for themselves, looks like a deep one at that.

    October 16, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  7. California Voter

    Obama defeated the incumbent opponent in his race for the IL. state senate by having a team of lawyers review the voter registration records, so he certainly knows all about voter fraud . . . .

    October 16, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  8. Independent 08

    Wow! some of these comments from BO supporters are really out there!

    October 16, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  9. Darrell

    ACORN has been around so long why are they an issue now? Because The MCLYING XPRESS know they are losing this election so they want to infringe on people's rights to VOTE. Republicans need to understand they have already ruined this country in eight years we do not want another 4 years of their I do not care about you little people.

    October 16, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  10. james in s.c.

    pffft! this acorn crap is so full of crap, just 2 years ago mccain was a keynote speaker for the group, how hypocratical that can be? is it the radical religious right wing brain washing mcbush, i have the feeling that mcbush did not want this this sinister palin to be the veep!
    its time america!!! don't let this so call republican take over nor the evagelical take over the stupidity over another 4 years of this crap, to me it's false profesicy, these so called republican are deceiving just like the satan will do!!!


    October 16, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  11. Mo, NC

    McCain's campaign has nothing left!


    October 16, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  12. E

    By LAW ACORN has to turn in every single registration that has anything on it, if someone handed them 3000 cards that say "I like poo" they HAVE to be turned in to the state. There was NO fraud! and BTW, registering to vote, is NOT the same as voting, not a single VOTE was cast.

    October 16, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  13. thomas

    What is John McCain hiding? What is his relationship with the Saudis, where Osama Bin Laden hailed as did most of the 911 attackers. Why was John McCain meeting with a prominent lobbyist for the Saudis? Come clean, John McVain. Tell us what your true relationship with the terrorists is.

    October 16, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  14. Tony

    McCain should release more information about Joe the plumber.

    October 16, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  15. jeff

    Obama is involved somehow. I understand there were some issues when he ran for office in Illinois by having a bunch of his opponents votes discredited. but it doesn't matter you can't believe anything he says. the best one is the tax break for 95% of people. that is good when 45% of the people don't pay taxes. sounds like wealth redistribution to me.

    October 16, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  16. Tulsa S

    Republicans will stop at nothing, they don't want anymore people to register to vote, it seems the more that register are democrat and they want to stop it........every election there has been fraud registrations, and every year there has been voteing places that have done shady things, (and the GOP has been reponsibale for some of this) so the republicans are running scared and they want to suppress the rights of others to vote.

    October 16, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  17. Lisa

    Obama should NEVER have responded to this line of questioning from McCain. Anyone who care about it is free to get ALL the info from the internet. As long as he stayed silent McCain was driving himself crazy, harping on it, to try to get a response. Obama could have had him in a tail spin right up to Nov.4.

    October 16, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  18. Colin

    I don't know what else there is to release? Obama isn't involved with ACORN, he was an attorney for them in a lawsuit...which was his job. All of this talk of ACORN is getting ridiculous the problem that is at hand is Voter Registration Fraud NONE OF THE FAKE PEOPLE THAT WERE REGISTERED CAN VOTE!!!!!! All of them were flagged and turned into the government, when someone is registered they are given three chances to confirm the information on the forms, and prove they are that person, if they don't answer they are flagged and it is turned in. The issue here is that someone who was being paid to get people to register to vote was not doing their job and instead of going out they filled all the forms out themselves thinking they wouldn't be caught and could collect their pay check. I don't get why the republicans are continuing to push this besides to put fear into the public that their vote won't count and to yet again distract people from the real issues. Once again THE FAKE PEOPLE REGISTERED CAN NOT VOTE AND WILL NOT BE ABLE TO VOTE this WILL NOT affect the outcome of the election. ACORN is bi-partisan and registers people regardless of their political views, none of these forms stated which candidate the fake registered person was voting for. Educate yourselves.... Obama is not using them to help get people registered and the republican candidate John McCain spoke at a rally for ACORN in 2006. This whole thing has been blown so far out of proportion....LET IT GO GET BACK TO THE REAL ISSUES THAT AMERICANS CARE ABOUT!!!!

    October 16, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  19. Dan in Portland

    Mickey Mouse can register to vote and it is not voter fraud. Mickey Mouse can register to vote 100 times and it is not voter fraud.

    Voter fraud only occurs if Mickey Mouse votes. Then the Diebold voting machine he was using changes his vote from Obama to McCain and multiplies it by 100 and leaves no paper trail.

    October 16, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |








    October 16, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  21. Dr. Mann, MO


    Obama/Biden 08

    yes, we can
    yes, we can
    yes, we can
    yes, we can

    October 16, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  22. Fed Up

    McCants wrinkly old hands and play-doh face is revolting, he looks like his arms are going to break off like dried twigs.

    His facial expressions tell it all.
    Old, wrinkled, disgusting

    October 16, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  23. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    What a bossy old bully. He seems to always be directing Obama about what he needs to do and not do.

    I trust Obama's judgment more than McWarmonger's.

    October 16, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  24. billy

    Joe the plumer is now JOE DIRT

    October 16, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  25. NENA

    Give it up already. McCain is missing his brain..................Quit already!

    October 16, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
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