From The Washington Times:
In an startling partisan shift, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. on Thursday proposed holding hearings on claims the liberal activist group ACORN engaged in a pattern of crimes ranging from voter fraud to a mob-style “protection” racket.
Mr. Conyers, Michigan Democrat and fierce partisan, suggested a congressional probe after scathing testimony about the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) during a hearing on various voting issues related to the 2008 presidential election.
Mr. Conyers called the accusations “a pretty serious matter.”
“I think that it would be something that would be worth our time,” he said during Thursday’s hearing. “We’ve never had one person representing ACORN before the committee. … I think in all fairness we ought to really examine it.”
I really don’t know what this means exactly, but this is such a gift horse that I’m not about to question it. John Conyers is a senior member of the House with a lot of tenure. When he wants something done, it usually happens. Perhaps all of the efforts by right-wing bloggers to expose the illegitimate and corrupt practices of ACORN are finally paying off. Or maybe Rep. Conyers has finally figured out that a lot of Americans — enough to turn Congress back over to the Republicans, anyway — really do care what Congress does, and are angered by the level of corruption and impropriety that has been associated with Democrats during the past two years, especially after they promised America the most ethical Congress in history. An investigation of ACORN is of utmost importance right now, since the White House has announced that they intend to make ACORN a major player in the 2010 Census.
Here’s what piqued Rep. Conyers’ interest:
The testimony by Pittsburgh lawyer Heather Heidelbaugh accused the nonprofit group of violating tax, campaign-finance and other laws by, among other things, sharing with the Barack Obama campaign a list of the Democrat’s maxed-out campaign donors so ACORN could use it to solicit them for a get-out-the-vote drive.
She also testified that the Democrat-allied group provided liberal causes with protest-for-hire services and coerced donations from targets of demonstrations through a shakedown it called the “muscle for the money” program.
Naturally ACORN is denying all accusations of wrongdoing, and other Democrats spoke up in defense of ACORN after Rep. Conyers made his statements. Still, Congressional hearings into the corruption at ACORN will be an important step toward weakening the current partisan stranglehold placed on our government by the Democratic Party. No organization, even if they are involved with pet progressive causes like low-income housing and voter registration, should be afforded a pass simply because they are deep in the pockets of the Democratic party.