Thursday, April 07, 2011

Yet another way to know they're not on your side

This is the headline on a Faux News story:
ACORN Pleads Guilty to Voter Registration Fraud in Nevada
Omigosh! It's true! Everything the reactionaries said about those damn left-wingers was true! OMG!

So to what did the group actually plead guilty?
The violation was for unlawfully providing compensation for registering voters based on the total number of people registered.
Um. that's it? That's what the screaming headline about FRAUD was about?

Yup, that's it. Paying per signature is illegal in Nevada, in fact it's a felony, I gather on the basis that it encourages phony registrations. It appears that ACORN was in fact guilty. But of what, by which I mean, to what effect? If the charge had been something about a massive conspiracy to enable ineligible people to vote or to vote more than once in order to manipulate elections, that would be one thing. But no, that wasn't it:
The original complaint filed in May of 2009, included 26 counts of compensation for registration of voters....
It was the pay-by-signature that was the entire issue from the beginning. But to the wingnuts, it doesn't matter that it was what frankly appears to me to be a technical violation, not when it gives them the change to scream FRAUD!

Here I have to ask: Who was really defrauded in this case? The article says that among the false registrations were names of members of the Dallas Cowboys, who, I think we can assume, were not going to show up at the polls. It seems to me that the real victim here is ACORN, which wound up paying people for "registrations" which were useless both for voting and for advancing ACORN's goals, which included getting more poor people registered to vote. No matter, not when the whack jobs can screech FRAUD!

One more bit of proof of the "they're not on your side" thesis. This is the last paragraph of the article:
ACORN has long faced criticism after dozens of its workers allegedly committed voter registration fraud during the 2008 election. The group dissolved amid falling revenues last year after conservative activists posing as a pimp and prostitute caught some of its workers offering tax advice to them.
They managed to find space to include both those hoary accusations but could find no room to note that the latter case has been more than thoroughly debunked and the former cases arose because most if not all states (quite properly) require the submission of all registration forms gathered, even the ones the gathering orgaqnization believed phony. (Indeed, in at least one case, state officials knew the registrations were phony because ACORN itself flagged them as such when they were submitted.) Nor did they find space to mention that there is not a shred of evidence anywhere that any illegal votes were cast as the result of anything ACORN did or tried to do.

But I imagine that's to be expected because, after all, the truth wouldn't scream FRAUD!

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