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

RNC points to ACORN, 2010 census to fundraise

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/09/art.rncemail0409.rnc.jpg caption="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. Dave NYC

    Sad, sad, sad: The GOP still playing the fear card.

    Will there ever be hope for them again?

    April 9, 2009 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  2. Chi Town


    It was 54%... same as Bush 04

    But don't let facts get in your way

    April 9, 2009 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  3. Viet Vet

    Just like the terminator – -IT'S BAAACCCK!
    Let it go folks

    April 9, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  4. Cary

    The Republican party has seriously become the biggest joke not only in our country but the world. How ridiculous can a party get?

    April 9, 2009 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  5. butterfly

    Take a look at Texas re-districting in 2003 for a look at how the Republicans can try and manipulate voting districts to benefit them. They can't win on ideas so the resort to manipulating numbers. The Democrats are just trying to make sure very single American is counted and the voting districts are fair and based on the accurat population. I tried to put a link on here about the Texas re-districting, but I guess links aren't allowed. Specifically look at the maps.

    April 9, 2009 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  6. Scott AZ

    I have never participated in a cenus and have no plans to start now.

    April 9, 2009 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  7. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Bring it on Steele, we are more than happy to engage you in a lawsuit which you won't win and the RNC will dump you like a hot potatoe.

    April 9, 2009 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  8. Cfoster

    The ACORN complaints is just the Republican party creating a fairy tale of lies. I would like to know how many people is some states the GOP prevents from voting because of lies and scare tactics..

    April 9, 2009 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  9. Barbara Campbell

    The Republicans manage to keep sinking lower with their deceit and manipulation.

    April 9, 2009 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  10. thefletch

    It's about time to form another party these goons in Washington both "partys" are not in tune with the ........ citizens, march and march soon to save this republic! We have the voice...WE THE PEOPLE!!!!!!....

    April 9, 2009 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  11. Renfield

    ACORN is a thug organization. The tragedy for America is they are soon to be paid bipartisan tax dollars to do their partisan political pressuring and thug work - the very essence of corruption.

    Only in office months, Obama is the worst, most destructive president we've ever had! He's a total embarrassment.

    April 9, 2009 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  12. Frank, Las Vegas

    More outright Lies from Steele and the GOP, surprise, surprise! The GOP wonders why Americans overwhelmingly Rejected them in 2008, it's the LIES. If the GOP thinks they were rejected in 2008, just wait until 2010. After 2010 the GOP will no longer be a party, they'll just be a group. A group of extreme ring wing idiots. That's all that will remain of the GOP, and they'll still think that they represent the people.

    They continue to lie, I guess they don't understand that even if they don't know how to use computers to check out the truth, Americans can and do check out their lies all the time. That's how America knows they are LIES. The GOP has turned from the party on No to the party of idiots. 2010 can't get here soon enough!

    April 9, 2009 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  13. Vince

    From the article:
    "It seems the Obama Administration has plans to rig the Census results...ACORN's community organizers are eager to once again take action to aid their old friend in the White House...You can be sure they'll be manipulating population numbers."

    WOW. These unfounded accusations are absolutely disgusting. Any wrongdoing on Acorn's part in the election was roundly refuted. They (Acorn) should sue Steele and the Republican party for defamation. I would love to try to have respect for the Republicans, but then they resort to these types of tactics and I think that maybe a One-party system will be just fine.

    April 9, 2009 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  14. john

    yea, its strange how obama wants to move the census to the white house, he be first president to do so.

    April 9, 2009 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  15. Ennis, LA

    Obama is the most partisan president I've seen. ACORN went out
    and registered the same people over and over and over again. They
    are expecting a windfall of voters to ensnare once Obama grants
    amnesty to 12 million illegals! He promised this in his campaign.
    What he didn't promise was to personally take control of the national
    census count by taking it out of the hands of the Commerce Dept.
    and moving it to the White House. The Democrats hope to pick up
    more House seats this way in 2012 by re-districting them away from Republican states. Barack...your partisan hand is showing.

    April 9, 2009 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  16. Jeffrey in Georgia

    Take it one further. Not only did they deny voter fraud, they were investigated, and found NOT to have conducted voter fraud. The only fraud that was committed were by some lazy workers against ACORN, no voter fraud of any kind was committed.

    April 9, 2009 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  17. Alan

    Yes. Karl Rove's stamp of approval has been achieved. Bet he's back at work behind the scenes. God forbid ALL the poor in urban areas should be counted for once and proper districting set up.

    Next question: how many REPUBLICAN-backed organizations also accept federal funding?

    April 9, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  18. tess

    YES – we finally have an RNC chair that knows how to fight the group of unethical, lying, powergrabbing dems – let's see how they react to somebody who's got their number - go steele!!!!!!!!!

    April 9, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  19. Da Professor

    Here we go again! Wouldn't ya know it, the right-wing extremists are at it again, accusing the ACORN group of wanting to rig the census.

    Will we ever hear the end of the lies, hypocrisy, and arrogance from the Republican right? Will we ever see the end of the Republican quest for rigging elections not in the voting booth but by taking the election to the Republican controlled Supreme Court?

    April 9, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  20. mario

    ACORN is the friend of the liberals, time to rid this country of these little maggots!

    April 9, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  21. Da Professor

    And another lie from one of the rigth-wing extremists posting here ... "Real simple …stop giving Acorn taxpayer money. Period!"

    ACORN has NOT received one drop of stimulus or any other money!

    April 9, 2009 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  22. Dominique

    Ms. Stewart I have to take issue with your reference to Barack Obama as the Democrat nominee. Although the on-air personalities at FOX and various other Republican spokespeople have been relentless in their determination to rewrite our language, I expect that a CNN contributor will know and use the correct terminology. While Barack Obama is a Democrat he was the Democratic nominee.

    April 9, 2009 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  23. once upon a horse

    GOP 31% approval rating
    President Obama 66% approval rating

    enuf said!

    April 9, 2009 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  24. Sammy

    Perhaps the republican party thinks its impossible they actually lost the election fair and square. Therefore something must be rigged since no other reason is possible. After all, the majority of people in this country wanted another republican president... right? Didnt they? They love Bush so of course they did. They must have because democrats are nothing more than a bunch of pinko commies. Republicans are the only true Americans.

    Under normal circumstances such an attitude would be funny. But these party guys are serious about it. I am surprised they all still have jobs in the party.

    April 9, 2009 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  25. the voice of reason

    ELC wrote:

    "Stop making this sooooooooo complicated – it's not. Simply take the top 50 or 100 ACORN leaders and find out under which party they registered to vote. It's that simple! If this is truly a bipartisan organization, they will be pretty evenly split, by percentage, and have a strong right-wing and a left-wing representation among their ranks."

    That is so unconstitutional it's not even funny. This is the kind of ignorance the Republicans are playing to.

    April 9, 2009 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
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