Skip to main content

Lake County, Indiana is a county snuggled up to bright blue Chicago on the map. It includes cities like East Chicago, Gary, Crown Point and Hammond. Voter registration in Lake County is at an all-time high. Given those facts, it's also no surprise that Lake County, Indiana has been targeted for voter suppression by Republicans.

With Indiana being a battleground state this year, ACORN has been active in the state, including in Lake County, where it submitted 5,000 voter applications it received from its workers. It was required by law to turn in every single application, no matter how facially bogus it appeared. Indeed, failure to turn in all applications would be a crime (a Class A misdemeanor, to be exact, "punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and up to one year in prison.")

So not wanting to be fined or imprisoned, ACORN followed the law, submitting all of its Lake County applications. Around the close of the registration deadline, it submitted 2,500 applications. But when it did so, it separated those applications into three stacks, separating off those it believed to be problematic:

ACORN said it took steps to ensure officials knew some of the registrations it turned in were potentially bad.

"We ID'd those applications as questionable," Charles D. Jackson, spokesman for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, said of the Lake County applications.

"We turned them in three separate stacks: ones we had been able to verify, ones that were incomplete and ones that were questionable or suspicious."

Not only did ACORN flag suspicious applications--like the infamous "Jimmy John's" application--it also fired 82 workers 5 of 82 workers in Lake County (correction: 5 of the 82 workers were fired, not 82 as originally drafted).

Election officials say about half of the last-minute applications have some problem. Most of those, I'd wager, were already pre-sorted by ACORN.

Ah, but the GOP smelled a faux scandal, so they jumped on the Lake County registration as a prime example of the "fraud" being perpetrated by ACORN. They made lots of noise locally, and the called for an investigation by Lake County officials and Indiana's Attorney General. Richard Bramer, the Deputy Attorney General, pointed out that it was really a federal matter.

So the federal cavalry came marching in to investigate.  And we get this preview from Indiana Secretary of State spokesman Jim Gavin:

Gavin said he couldn't go into specifics of what the probe found, but said "what's become even more clear is a blatant disregard for Indiana law -- crimes have been committed against Indiana voters and taxpayers."

He said those allegations could include obtaining or submitting "voter registration applications known by the person to be materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent." The charge is a Class D felony

That voter registration fraud occurred is a given. It is a crime and the violators should be held accountable. But the key question will be exactly how the investigation report reads. Will it acknowledge that this was a fraud perpetrated on both the state and ACORN? Or will it just feed the flames of this faux controversy?

The report is expected sometime this week.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:00 PM PDT.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Thanks for this diary re. Acorn (6+ / 0-)

      The more I learn, the more i can inform friends/acquaintences.

    •  ACORN (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Shortly after I graduated from college, I was an ACORN organizer in Philadelphia. That meant knocking on doors in poor neighborhoods and asking people to become active in fighting for the interests of their own neighborhoods and, ultimately, low and moderate income people everywhere. I wrote about my experiences in Radical Teacher magazine, January 1988, "Taking it from the streets: an organizer goes back to school." (I leave it off my CV.)

      I started working in Fishtown, a poor white neighborhood on the Delaware. The people in Fishtown were nearly incapacitated politically by their racism. To quote YT:

      "    We had a hard time finding a place for the first neighborhood meeting. None of the churches would give us space -- the Civic Association got to all the preachers. The local Methodist minister didn't mince words: "People here don't want to see more benefits coming into the neighborhood, no more federal money, no more services. That would just end up upsetting the traditional ethnic balance here."

         Finally we arranged to meet in the Fishtown Civic Center. Our legal services lawyer had to threaten to sue the city before we got permission. . . . Six or seven of the fifty people in the room were boys from the Civic Association, come to make it even hotter than a Philadelphia August ought to be.

         One of them stood up after John and Charlie had made their speeches. "Okay. We've all heard how long you guys have lived here. . . I'm gonna be honest with you. I haven't lived here all my life. I moved here ten years ago from the other side of Front St., and you know why too." He slapped his bare forearm with two fingers, indicating the color of his skin. "Before I moved to Kensington, I lived in North Phillie near the park, and now that's darkest Africa. I moved here because Fishtown is white and I figure it's staying white. But now I'm not so sure."

      On the doors, we'd ask people what issues concerned them the most, and number one, most of the time, was "the niggers." They didn't like to work, they were all on welfare, and they were taking all the jobs. Also, they were going to push us into the river. I had much better experiences organizing in Black neighborhoods, where I never felt the least unwelcome, by pigmentation didn't matter, and there was a tradition of social protest that it was easy to tap into. We worked with the leadership in Fishtown that was willing to look past race to get things done, even if they did have a distance to travel in confronting their own attitudes, and over time we built a multiracial organization in Philadelphia that won some small victories in the neighborhoods and, I'd like to think, contributed to a gradual transformation of the political culture from the straight up racism of the Rizzo years to the more issue-based politics of today.

      Working for ACORN taught me that the biggest obstacle to effective class based politics in this country is racism. That's why we have never had a labor party or a true party of the left as in every European country. That's why we have had predominantly Republican rule since Nixon. ACORN organizes poor people and working class people across the racial divide, and it confronts race baiting as the principle establishment strategy against it everywhere it goes. Now the Republicans have elevated their attack on ACORN to the national level, and once again, the subtext is racial: they're trying to set up a whole lot of darkies to cast fraudulent votes for their dusky radical black nationalist candidate.

      Well, to ACORN I say congratulations: there's no such thing as bad publicity. It's the same old evil crap you're confronting, but now you've made the big time.

      The people united will never be defeated.

    •  Yes. (0+ / 0-)

      Thanks again to georgia10 for continuing to shine a light on voter issues (which is much more than just ACORN).

  •  "county snuggled up to bright blue Chicago" (7+ / 0-)

    Hey you two get a room.

    Saying the Iraq "Surge" worked is like saying Thelma & Louise had a flying car.

    by JML9999 on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:02:19 PM PDT

  •  Lovely (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els, DC Scott, llbear, WatermelonGrower

    Add this to all the crap from the primaries about how long Lake County took to count and the Rs will push this for all it's worth...

    "Polls are like crack, political activists know they're bad for them but they read them anyways."-Unknown

    by skywaker9 on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:02:27 PM PDT

  •  Looking forward to reading the report (3+ / 0-)

    ...And rubbing it in the GOP/Faux news face

    "We were warriors then, and our tribe was strong like a river" - Hunter S Thompson

    by GonzoLegend on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:02:52 PM PDT

  •  Was the AG one of Rove's? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skywaker9, DC Scott, WatermelonGrower

    That might be a deciding factor.

    -9.00, -5.85
    What do you talk about when you cannot explain the last eight years of failure? -- Joe Biden

    by Wintermute on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:04:27 PM PDT

  •  Does a one legged duck swim in circles? (6+ / 0-)
    The Indiana Secretary of State is a Republican.

    He has not been fired for refusing to indulge in Republican-backed accusations of voting hanky-panky.

    That's really all you need to know to figure out how truthy any reports he writes on the subject will be.

    And the Bush-appointed deputy AG, who has also not been fired for insufficient partisanship,  will be equally predictable.

    REPUBLICANS: The Older White Meat.

    by AdmiralNaismith on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:05:52 PM PDT

    •  Not just a Republican. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      A Republican from Lake County, Todd Rokita. He's from Munster.

      I live in Lake County. Our local press has about zero on this whole ACORN thing, or if it did, it blew right over. Not a big deal around these parts, that I can tell, from looking at The Times or the Post Tribune.

      A cursory search at The Times turned up an AP report that ran October 13th in the Indianapolis Star, which stated that the ACORN thing in Lake County was brought up about two weeks ago.

      While last week's headlines had to do with early voting centers opening up throughout the county after a game of hot potato between federal and county courts, most people are more worried about a repeat of the county's inability to tabulate votes.

      •  talk radio constructs the mountains with its (0+ / 0-)

        unique capacity for GOP coordinated UNCONTESTED repetition and it shows up  later in mainstream traditional corporate print as some genuine issue- the created mountain.

        ignoring the talk radio monopoly continues to be the biggest political blunder in decades

        by certainot on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 06:32:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  ACORN seems to be clean as a hound's tooth. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Inland, Randall Sherman, pmukh, abraxas

    Very careful concerning dotting i's and t's and all that, segregating suspect forms, etc.  They know they're in the crosshairs.  Can't help but think of the old saying, "No good deed goes unpunished."  Especially when it's helping the have nots exercise their power.  

    I have to laugh, also, at all the activity in the DOJ Public Integrity Unit lately.  Headed up by the infamous Alice Fisher of Whitewater fame.  Seems like an awful lot of Dems are getting investigated, while Repub cases (cough*Stevens*cough) are botched by prosecutorial misconduct.  Hmmmmmm . . . . .

    "Lawyers, I suppose, were children once." To Kill A Mockingbird

    by DC Scott on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:07:34 PM PDT

    •  had that thought myself (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DC Scott, Randall Sherman

      Geez, a Republican up for corruption trial just before an election? How best could the Bush DOJ help the Republican? Why, by screwing up a prosecution to where a judge might end up throwing it out, or the jury has no choice but to conclude charges not proven beyond reasonable doubt....

  •  Interpreting the Report (6+ / 0-)
    I suspect that the GOP will learn from the report that all of their suspicions have been justified and that Obama is clearly trying to steal the election.  Regardless of what the report actually says.
  •  Ha! Just heard Wolf say that Romney (mittens !!!) (4+ / 0-)

    said he'd never call Obama a 'socialist'...

    Sorry...back to voter fraud fraud...but I had to post it before I forgot.

    Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:07:49 PM PDT

  •  So our republican friends say what ACORN (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els, DC Scott, Randall Sherman, pmukh, brein

    SHOULD have done is take all the registrations that seemed bogus to ACORN and just dumped them, taking the chance that a legitimate person arrives at the polling place for a nasty surprise....I wonder how many republican leaning organizations take registrations from people just to fake them out.

    When a Texas socialite can be named Ima Hogg, I think we don't want anyone but officials making the call.

    Being Pro-American is being focused on the issues that Americans care about. Jobs. Health care. Security. That's the democrats.

    by Inland on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:07:51 PM PDT

    •  ouch! (0+ / 0-)

      her parents should have been brought up on charges of child abuse for giving her that name

      •  they were all Hoggs, and were very (0+ / 0-)

        political. i can't recall details, but google or wikipedia would be enlightening. so ... i'm off!!

        I AM living in interesting times: and my hovercraft is full of eels.

        by greenbird on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:30:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  and...i'm back!! nice little tidbit from linkie: (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          "The discovery of oil on her family's plantation made Hogg very wealthy, and she used this income to benefit the people of Texas. In 1929, she founded the Houston Child Guidance Center, which provides counseling for disturbed children and their families. Through her brother's will, she established the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health at the University of Texas at Austin in 1940. Hogg successfully ran for a seat on the Houston School Board in 1943, where she worked to remove gender and race as criteria for determining pay and established art education programs for black students. Hogg never married, and died in 1975. The Ima Hogg Foundation was the major beneficiary of her will, and carries on her philanthropic work today. Several annual awards have been established in her name, honoring her efforts to preserve cultural heritage in Texas."

          I AM living in interesting times: and my hovercraft is full of eels.

          by greenbird on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:41:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Use that RNC money to investigate all the states (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Randall Sherman, CityLightsLover

    then. I mean you don't want to disenfranchise the entire country?

    John McCain...The Maverick Penguin

    by jazzence on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:08:42 PM PDT

  •  Yet the only arrest made this year in connection (6+ / 0-)

    with voter registration fraud is a...Republican.

  •  cavalry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    not calvary.  Calvary is where they crucified Jesus.

    louise 'hussein' to you! proud donor to "White Dudes for Obama" Endorsed 11/1/07 and never looked back!

    by louisev on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:09:07 PM PDT

  •  David Letterman! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els, Randall Sherman

    Just thought I'd throw a "good Hoosier" out there! ;D The whole situation in Lake County is a perfect storm for GOPers looking for "shenanigans." You've got the whole "Chicago machine" angle, high African - American population, some extremely poor areas...all kinds of good stuff to try to scare the living $hit outta people.

    "Hold back the edges of your gowns, Ladies, we are going through hell." William Carlos Williams' intro to "Howl"

    by CityLightsLover on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:09:23 PM PDT

  •  Republicans want to talk about anything (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Inland, JML9999
    but the issues.

    They lose on the issues.

    I can see the end of Sarah Palin's political career from my house. Sue, West Allis, Wisconsin

    by Puddytat on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:10:01 PM PDT

  •  Voter registration fraud (0+ / 0-)

    I find it humorous (and sometimes frustrating) that the Republicans and those on the far right continually look past the FEDERAL requirement to turn in every registration (even the blatantly bogus ones).  Also, conveniently, they look past the fact that ACORN has never once been prosecuted for voter registration fraud, but has been the plaintiff in fraud cases against some former registrars for intentionally submitting bogus registrations.  In fact, the DOJ has even been a co-Plaintiff, on the side of ACORN in some of these cases.

    But that's all too much chaff for the Republicans to wade through.  They just want headlines that cast doubt on the election, willfully ignoring every evidentiary fact of these cases and instances of intentional bogus registration submissions by bad registrars.

  •  Republican Good Ole Boys in Indy (0+ / 0-)

    If the Crusty GOP Trolls in Indianapolis were half as concerned about manufacturing jobs in their state as they were about party smear politics, the Hoosier state would be gaining jobs and reducing poverty. But then again, they'd be competent.

  •  I'm so glad you came forward with this (0+ / 0-)

    This information can be used to counter the 'Fraud! Fraud!' wingers.  

    "Republicans are poor losers and worse winners." - My grandmother, sometime in the early 1960s

    by escapee on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:14:28 PM PDT

  •  New ABC/WaPo up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Randall Sherman
    053-M44 likely voters

    10/16-19 tracking poll

  •  In order for this to turn into voter fraud.. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Randall Sherman

    all those sweet old retired election workers will have to help on election day.  
    Why do the Republicans think all those sweet old retired election workers are corrupt?

    Straight Talk Express Lost a Wheel on "That One."

    by God loves goats on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:15:47 PM PDT

    •  Probably because... (0+ / 0-)

      ...some of those election workers have the audacity and brains not to support John McShame for President!

    •  Sigh. Probably because some were involved (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in the absentee shenanigans that led to the 2003 mayoral election being thrown out by judges and redone.

      Let's not get everything all out of perspective.  There is a long history of shady voting schemes in Lake County Indiana.  Sometimes, those schemes have been perpetrated to keep honest democrats from defeating the dishonest democrats who run patronage armies.

  •  My Call List is Lake Co. Indiana (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WatermelonGrower, Late Boomer

    Well, tonight could be fun. Just yesterday I decided I needed to do more than talk to the already converted and took the leap of clicking on an Obama email that ultimately led to me receiving a list of 60 names of registered voters in Indiana to call. Almost all of them are smack dab in the middle of Lake County.

    I made about 20 calls last night - about a quarter of the numbers were disconnected, another quarter not home or unwilling to talk. Of the remaining 10, I'd say six were voting Obama, three McCain, one undecided - but had a nice conversation with her, so maybe she was swayed.

    Anyway, guess I better bone up on the Fact Check article about Acorn before I hit the phones tonight.

    "When facism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." (Sinclair Lewis)

    by GreatMidwest on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:16:40 PM PDT

  •  So, does this mean that ACORN had the choice... (4+ / 0-)

    ... of committing a Class D felony (handing in all applications received as required by one law) or a Class A misdemeanor (not handing in applications that it suspected to be fraudulent as required by another law)?

    I knew that my Hoosier relatives were slightly nuts, but I thought it was just them.

    Looks like it's the whole freaking state that's insane!

  •  Seems like this may really be an attempt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to quash voter registration efforts. Making it so difficult for organizations to register new voters, with threats of federal prosecution in the wings, will have a dampening effect on those efforts all over the country.

    I'm sure MLK is rolling over in his grave.

    Wer kämpft, kann verlieren. Wer nicht kämpft, hat schon verloren. (Who fights, can lose. Who does not fight, has already lost. -Bertolt Brecht, via MoDem)

    by Late Boomer on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:23:40 PM PDT

    •  Indiana Secretary of State, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Todd Rokita, along with Gov. Mitch Daniels and the then Indiana state legislature, is responsible for the notorious Indiana photo voter ID law.  They pushed that disenfranchising piece of legislation all the way to the Supreme Court and, sadly, won.  He is a way too partisan Republican to be in charge of crafting and applying election laws.  Our own Katherine Harris.  

      So watch for them to try to make hay out of this.  In our county, Republicans are calling their headquarters volunteering to go through all the new registrations looking for errors.  Of course, the registrations have either driver's licenses numbers or the last 4 digits of voters' Social Security numbers, plus birthdates, which the Voter Registration Office itself checks!  Speaking fairly, however, the GOP county chair said he did not expect to find instances of foul play.

      The fraud is the cry of "voter fraud."  Help make sure new voters are not intimidated!

  •  I must of missed it in 2000 when John McCain (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Randall Sherman

    was so upset by the irregularities in Florida that he fought so hard to ensure every vote was counted. I mean he is such an honorable man, I'm sure he wouldn't just be exploiting ACORN for political gain.


    Love that "power of the purse!" It looks so nice up there on the mantle (and not the table) next to the "subpoena power."

    by Sacramento Dem on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:25:33 PM PDT

  •  On to the voting machines flipping O votes to Mc (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Which have been reported in GOPer controlled areas of several states.

    Live and in color VOTER FRAUD as opposed to voter registration fraud.

    "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

    by 417els on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:27:37 PM PDT

  •  Normally, Fraud Requres Intent (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Norm in Chicago

    Any kind of fraud usually requires intent.  Clearly, separating out suspect forms nullifies any possible argument for intent.

  •  More GOP bullshit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's time to put the punks McCain-Palin away (GOTV!).

    by noofsh on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:28:53 PM PDT

  •  ? for the attorneys (...Georgia) (0+ / 0-)

    I'm not a lawyer and I don't play one on TV, but it seems to me it would be double-jeopardy (or something else lawyerly sounding) to require all voter registration forms to be turned in (even if clearly fraudulent) AND to subject the person or organization turning in those forms (even the clearly fraudulent ones) to fraud charges.

    ...Nice spot on Beyond the Beltway, btw. Bruno's a goof and was clearly out of his spinny league up against you and the other folks in the studio. I agree with him on Con-Con but that's about it (and even then, for different reasons).

  •  There's something wrong with ACORN's methods (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ne plus ultra, MelloY

    If they regularly have high double digit percentages that are fraudulent, then there is something wrong with ACORN's methodology.

    They either need to be tougher on who they hire, do better training, have better supervision or something.

    The GOP is out of line with their attacks, but the way ACORN goes about registering voters is obviously flawed and needs to be revamped.

    •  I agree, but ACORN isn't alone. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Due to the nature of paid canvassing jobs (i.e., rather low pay and extremely temporary work) there tends not to be a whole lot of screening or supervision.  I'm not sure what the solution is, but I agree, the way things work now is far from optimal.

      •  Let's put it this way (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        homerun, brein

        when Barack himself ran a campaign in Chicago and its suburbs that registered 100,000 people, far more than were registered in this little campaign in East Chicago, I was on the other side of the counter accepting those registrations, and we didn't see problems like this.  

        It does take some organizing skills and hiring good people under you.  But this is the sort of thing that you can find volunteers to help with.  

        ACORN does some good work.  They didn't do so well in Lake County, and they need to rethink their strategies, hiring practices and take a hard look at the personnel who were involved at the supervisory level.  

        Were registrars told that every registration would be verified? (which is a compelling threat even if in the end you're only able to look at a sampling, and not every registration.)  Were they told that every registration would be looked at BEFORE PAYMENT WAS ISSUED?  

        Were they told that no payment would be made for registrations that weren't turned in within x number of days from the time it was taken?  This is important because you can see that so and so isn't really doing anything, and he knows you know.  My bet is that the people responsible didn't set out on their training day to turn in a bunch of bad registrations.  

        Instead, I'd guess the 5 bad apples meant to register people, procrastinated for a month, and then on the last day, they were like, crap, I'm not going to get any money, and bingo, a plan was born.  

        Requiring regular check-ins would have pre-empted that strategy.  No registrations on Sept. 2nd?  What's up Joe?  

        One important thing to keep in mind is that there was reason for ACORN to be suspect of the political culture in Lake County, and to fear that this sort of thing might happen, since corrupt patronage led directly to an absentee vote fraud scam on a large scale just 5 years ago, which resulted in the entire mayoral election of a fairly large city (East Chicago) being thrown out and re-done!  

        •  is it possible (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          that the law back then in Illinois is different than it is today in Indiana?

          It was required by law to turn in every single application, no matter how facially bogus it appeared. Indeed, failure to turn in all applications would be a crime (a Class A misdemeanor, to be exact, "punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and up to one year in prison.")

          So not wanting to be fined or imprisoned, ACORN followed the law, submitting all of its Lake County applications.

          •  No, it's not possible (0+ / 0-)

            that that was a significant difference, even if it were true.

            Any registration campaign that had volunteers taking large numbers of fraudulent registrations who didn't turn them over to authorities for investigation of the crime would have been reprehensible. They would have let us know about fraudulent registrations.

            The "catch-22" here is a bit of a distraction.  Yes, ACORN flagged these registrations.  That's great.  Yes, they were in the position of having to turn over the evidence that's now being used in a political manner.

            But their campaign in Lake County was a disaster.  Not one, not two, but FIVE registrars turning in bullshit registrations!?  Apparently turning in hundreds of them!?  That IS a scandal.  It's not the scandal the GOP is making it into, but it IS a scandal.

            And somebody else taking registrations at the driver facility, so that he got paid for registering people right outside an office where they would have been registered anyway?!  

            Just looking at this from the point of view of Democratic donor who wants Barack elected, this is a disaster.  Poor management means they wasted a lot of money and failed at a registration drive in the most Democratic part of Indiana, a key state.  Why the fuck was this allowed to happen?  We can keep the "scandal" in context without making excuses for ACORN here.

        •  Obama worked for IART, if I remember correctly. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Anecdotally, IART (and similar organizations, like DART) do a great job of training and mentoring their organizers.  They also facilitate between organizations so that like groups (churches, social clubs, etc.) form coalitions that work together throughout the year (not just during elections) to amass enough political and other power to improve the local community.  They rely heavily on volunteers, and I am not sure, but I would guess that the majority of those registering voters during IART drives were volunteers.

          I agree with your paying people adds a whole other layer of problems.  I have told the story that (through a comedy of errors) I ended up doing paid canvassing for two days. It was a nightmare. I spent months and months before and after canvassing on a voluntary basis, and everybody I came into contact with was more professional, more organized, more concered, etc. and we never had near the problems that the paid canvassers had.

  •  Kompromat. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els, WatermelonGrower

    That's what it's called in Soviet terms.  It means something like compromising information.  Make two conflicting laws, for example.  Obeying one means you can't obey the other, so you're guilty of something no matter what.  Whenever an apparatchik needs to remove a citizen to prison, or needs cash if target has enough to squeeze out, or maybe just wants to phuk someone's wife or hire her out as an "escort" (that's just for sport and the fun of humiliation.  Yes, it happens), no contest.

    In the USSA version in this case, it's a misdemeanor to not file voter registrations even if one fraudulent registration is known and flagged in advance.  Or, it's a felony to file it.  Either way, file it or don't file it, busted.

    The logical choice is to avoid the conflict by not registering voters, to be on the safe side.  That is evidently the Replickremlin objective in the matter.

    Does Indiana have good borscht and vodka yet?  Just checking.

    In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.
    -- George Orwell

    by USexpat Ukraine on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:38:18 PM PDT

  •  Lake County (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mae, WatermelonGrower

    is also one of the few Indiana counties with a sizable black population. Once again, poor minorities suffer because of the GOP.

  •  IMHO Acorn is a diversion (0+ / 0-)

    ACORN could be a calculated diversion by the GOP. If any group needs too be watched for massive voter fraud, it's the GOP. Most of if not all of the major electronic voting machine Corps. are owned by GOP controlled groups and families. These devices are as we now know easily  programmed or hacked to steal whole elections. The ACORN thing isn't even about election fraud. In fact it's about people trying to de-defraud ACORN itself. NO voting fraud is involved at all. On the other hand whose watching the GOP and the machines? I won't be surprised if they don't try and steal this election by padding the vote or just stealing it outright. How would anyone know? They'll just call it "the Bradley effect."  The ACORN charges are "projection."  

    "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

    by Blutodog on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 02:49:13 PM PDT

  •  Last phase for them, make sure you can't vote (0+ / 0-)

    I think the last phase for the Republicans is making it so you can't vote.  Silly you think?  So what happens when the polls close in a hour and you have a line that is 2-3 hours.  Promise the Republican lawyers are ready to fight longer hours in places where Dems are strong and will fight for longer hours in places were Republicans are strong.  Another trick they can use is to keep people from voting by having longer lines in places where the turnout may not be favorable (Gee, half the machines aren't working?)  Having people turned away is just as much voter fraud as having a fake person vote, but the Republicans know that they are far more likely to get away with making it harder/impossible to vote.

  •  this kind of crap (0+ / 0-)
    is the reason I told my mother to vote early and take whoever is possible to vote early also.  I am so sick of people finding new and inventive ways to prevent voting from an already to thin of a number voting public.
  •  As a former resident of Lake County, IN (0+ / 0-)
    - specifically Hammond - let's just say that those mountains are surrounded by moats. All claims about suspicious activity of both political parties always contain a grain of truth. Nobody there has clean hands.

    When it comes to machine politics, locally both parties are capable of everything.

    Be kind to one another. It will drive Republicans crazy.

    by llbear on Mon Oct 20, 2008 at 03:12:30 PM PDT

  •  Satellite voting? (0+ / 0-)

    I have been waiting for the update on the latest ruling about satellite voting in Lake County - another big of shenanigans occurring in that area. Has the judge ruled about the legality of the voting stations? She was supposed to do so today.

  •  To what degree, Charlie? (0+ / 0-)

    It's also important to report accurately the SCOPE of any registration fraud found.  I'm sick and tired of hearing about thousands of registrations turned in and then hear that "many of them" were fraudulent.  Much later (usually after the election's over) we then find out that the fraudulent registrations numbered a few dozen.

    I want accurate numbers of how many registrations are found to be fraudulent immediately, or at least BEFORE anybody gets to spout off about "massive conspiracies" or whatnot.

  •  wow. sarah palin video. (0+ / 0-)

    oh my god, check this video out. you'll die

  •  how republicans can make dems look bad (0+ / 0-)

    OK this is wierd but not out of the realm of possible given the depths the Republicans are going to for vote supression. You send die hard republicans to register under phoney names with ACORN. Then you charge the  DEMS and ACORN with voter fraud and throw out all the voters registered this way, including the 95% that are valid. Lets hope they do not get away with it!

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site