Barack Obama

How ACORN Paved the Way for the Obama Regime and Socialized Health care

As patriots from across America prepare to descend on Washington, DC to protest the government takeover of health care, the Obama administration is touting the impending vote in the House of Representatives as “historic.” Progressive organizations have been preparing for the moment for decades and not even the outcry of millions of Americans will stop them from pushing their radical agenda through.

 

Ironically, the past week has been filled with numerous stories of how ACORN is disbanding across the country. News outlets from Politico to the New York Times run stories detailing the demise of ACORN. Of course, some are skeptical about whether ACORN is truly going away:

"In an age of lawlessness, rules for some out of government favor, and special privileges for special classes, racketeers and criminals need only change their suit and their hat and live another day to rob, steal, cheat, and engage in human trafficking... "

Conveniently for the Obama administration the “demise” of ACORN could not have come at a better time. As pictures of empty ACORN offices fill the news, Obama pushes forward with an ACORN planned and approved agenda.

 

In July of last year ACORN honored the work of Senator Charles Schumer, Rep. Luis Gutierrez and Rep. Maxine Waters at their 39th Anniversary celebration. The invitation email stated:

"P.S. ACORN’s grassroots leadership believes we are experiencing a once-in-a-generation opportunity and must not squander this moment. Your generosity is needed now more than ever. Thanks."

ACORN's socialist agenda has always included some form of universal health care and like many of its “campaigns” this is not the first time ACORN has pushed for national change. The group, which was founded in Arkansas 40 years ago, maintained friendly relations with Bill Clinton when he was Governor of Arkansas and then President. The result of this relationship was HillaryCare. Americans fought back and ACORN was forced to back down. However, ACORN was not defeated and began to put a set of conditions in place that in the right political climate, would ensure victory. Michelle Malkin explains a 2008 ACORN memo on why Obamacare is so important:

“Why do they want Obamacare? An internal ACORN memo I obtained from August 2008 makes the motives clear. 'Over our 38 years, health care organizing has never been a major focus either nationally or locally for ACORN,' wrote ACORN Philadelphia region director Craig Robbins. 'But increasingly, ACORN offices around the country are doing work on health care.' The goal: 'Building ACORN Power.' The memo outlines the ACORN/HCAN partnership and strategy of opposing any programs that rely on “unregulated private insurance” – and then parlaying political victory on government-run health care 'to move our ACORN agenda (or at least part of it) with key electeds that we might otherwise not be able to pull off.'

The objective, in other words, is to piggyback and exploit Obamacare to improve and protect their political health.”

ACORN's famous liberal experiments were never outwardly dubbed as socialist action items but within the ranks of employees we knew that what made ACORN great was “fighting capitalism.” By never using certain words with members and outsiders, ACORN painted a picture of the poor rising out of poverty and demanding their fair share. In 2006 ACORN partnered with SEIU on several healthcare campaigns across the country

In California, home of Maxine Waters, ACORN's healthcare campaign in San Francisco mirrors the same tactics used by Obama to pass Obamacare.

“Health: Last year (’05) we saved health clinics. This year we provided the field experience to win a form of universal healthcare. David Sharples staffed the leadership on the campaign with leader Gisselle Quesada. Using the tax program to survey people on health needs, we were able to build a quick base, identify members who could put a face on the problem, and move numerous members on multiple fronts to move the key supervisor and win the campaign.”

According to the 2006 report, ACORN has been working with hospitals to introduce "universal healthcare" at the local levels and that success was the precursor to Obamacare.

 

The excerpts above are from a 2006 report available here.

The report goes on to state that even ACORN's non-profit affiliate Project Vote was somehow involved in healthcare

"Our issue-based GOTV program targeted some 686,796 people for an average of three contacts each. For example, Project Vote’s GOTV workers knocked on 396,273 doors in Ohio alone. Similar to our Voter Registration work, canvassers relate participation in the elections to salient issues in low- and moderate-income communities, such as healthcare..."

Critics on the left will state that it is a coincidence that ACORN and Obama's old employer Project Vote are both advocating for government run healthcare, but all of the evidence suggests that Obama and Congress are settling debts with their old friends.

Before the ACORN embezzlement scandal and the prostitution videos ACORN was more open about its influence on Capitol Hill. The aforementioned 2006 report has another tidbit about the ACORN political machine:

Immediately after the 2006 mid-term elections when the Democrats took control of Congress members were made aware of who put them there. ACORN used its organizing and voter registration arms to set the stage for Obamacare. Newbies like Democrats Sherrod Brown and Claire Mccaskill were just as beholden to ACORN as long standing members of Congress from ACORN districts. The excerpt and screen shot can also be found in the 2006 report:

"Furthermore, we are working to make sure that key leaders in Congress fully understand the role that ACORN played in the 2006 elections: we are working collaboratively with the political department to ensure that the impact of our political work is widely known and appreciated."

According to insiders, before the 2008 election ACORN and SEIU were so confident that Obama would win that a meeting in Santa Fe, New Mexico had an agenda that included a session entitled: Emerging Strategies III: Healthcare – Regime Change Priority with Richard Kirsch, Executive Director HCAN: Health Care for America Now

Regime Change?  A quick look at Wikipedia gives us an inkling as to what ACORN and SEIU are up to:

"In politics, a regime is the form of government: the set of rules, cultural or social norms, etc. that regulate the operation of government and its interactions with society. For instance, the United States has one of the oldest regimes still active in the world, dating to the ratification of its Constitution in 1789.

The term is also used to distinguish what is actually being enforced from what is considered legitimate. Enforcement of an unconstitutional statute would be a regime but not a law."

IIf one follows the money, one name (not surprisingly) emerges: George Soros. The Soros backed Democracy Alliance has pumped untold millions into groups that include ACORN and the architect of Obama's permanent campaign (Organizing for America), Harold Ickes's Catalist. The Democracy Alliance vision includes changing America through initiatives like health care.

With leftist billionaires lining up to ensure a permanent majority, the march towards socialism has been a well funded one.

"...George Soros and other wealthy liberals formed a loose-knit group to consider how to fund a political comeback. Their answer: Create a permanent political infrastructure of nonprofits, think tanks, media outlets, leadership schools, and activist groups—a kind of 'vast left-wing conspiracy' to compete with the conservative movement. The group they created –called the Democracy Alliance (DA)..."

Though the fall of ACORN was not anticipated, ACORN like the DA is a taxable nonprofit and its structure allows for such restructuring. Taxable nonprofit?  Matthew Vadum explains:

"Rob Stein explained the group’s legal structure to the Hudson panel:

'It is a taxable nonprofit. Think of it as a corporation that does not make a profit and doesn’t aspire to make a profit. We’re an association of individuals....'

"In other words, the DA has no interest in asking the IRS to register it as tax-exempt or to allow contributions to it to be tax-deductible. Were the DA to request tax-exemption as a 501(c)(4) lobby group or as a 527 political group, it would have to abide by a dizzying array of legal constraints. Members of the Democracy Alliance may want to impose Big Government bureaucracy and red tape on Americans, but the friends of George Soros are too rich to be bothered."

Was ACORN willing to go underground to save Obamacare? Is the Pope Catholic? ACORN's own 5 Year Political Plan describes a structure that is local in nature and prides itself on being that way.

ACORN's temporary fall from grace will allow it to go underground with the tacit support of the White House and use Obamacare to rally its base for a 2012 victory unless the ACORN roots of Obama's socialist agenda are exposed.

 

 

 

 

Growing Enthusiasm Gap Amongst Young Adult Voters

They said we were going to be the foundation of a new Democratic movement. They labeled us as a generation upon which Democrats could build a political dynasty. They thought we bled blue.  They were wrong.

A little more than a year after Barack Obama won 18-29 year olds by a 2-to-1 margin, young adults are changing course. We were wooed by the promise of “change”, only to find a year later that things have changed for the worse. Washington is different, but only because it is bigger. Government’s spending has transformed, but only in the sense that they are more profligate. The reach of government into our lives has been altered, but only because their arm is longer. This is not the change we voted for and we’re taking note.

A new poll by the Harvard Institute of Politics is the latest evidence of the growing shift of young adults towards the Republican Party. The reason? The poll suggests there is a growing lack of trust in governmental institutions to do the right thing and a concomitant desire to reduce its scope.

As President Obama and Democratic leaders continue to try and expand the role of government, young adults are beginning to push back. This is becoming most palpable in the growing enthusiasm gap found among Millennials. As Harvard’s Institute of Politics explains,

“A warning sign for Democrats in Congress – young Republicans under 30 are statistically more likely than young Democrats to say that they will ‘definitely be voting in November”

Other key takeaways showing the Republican momentum among young adults:

  • Among Millennials, more than 2-in-5 (41%) Republicans will definitely be voting, compared to 35% of Democrats
  • Of voters 18-29, those who voted for McCain are more likely to say they will definitely vote than those who voted for Obama (53%-to-44%)
  • Young adults who disapprove of President Obama’s job performance are more likely to vote than those who approve by a 35%-to-30% margin

This represents the perfect time for Republicans to become the brand of change that young adults are looking for. Our lifetimes have been filled with examples of government failure. Whether it be an education system that has seen no statistical improvement despite ever-increasing federal funds, or a entitlement system that looks more financially untenable by the day, we have been given little reason to trust that the government is the answer to our problems. As the party of limited government, Republicans can capture the hearts and minds of young conservatives.

But we must be active in our approach. As the voice of young conservatives, College Republicans stand are in the perfect position to educate and activate a new generation of Republicans. We can succeed where Obama and Democrats failed.  The Harvard poll asked,

The question at this moment is: Will our political leadership in Washington and around the country heed this new call – a call for Millennials to make government work and follow through on the bright promise that a generation dedicated to public service has come to passionately believe in?

It is clear that Millennials are looking for answers somewhere. Democrats in Washington have given all the wrong responses. Republicans now stand in the wings, waiting for their chance to heed the call in November 2010. But they cannot win without the support of young adults. College Republicans stand prepared to fill the void – to channel the energies of a generation who is ready for real change and looking for a party willing to give it to them. The enthusiasm is on our side and College Republicans will be there to capture it.

by Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee

Read more: www.collegerepublicans.org

Swiss-Cheese-GO: When the Exceptions Swallow the Rule

It was to be a new era of fiscal responsibility. In 2006, Nancy Pelosi promised that “the first thing” Democrats would do when they were in control was to reimpose Paygo rules that “Republicans had let lapse.” That didn’t quite happen. By 2008 those rules had “lapsed” twelve times for a total of $400 billion in new deficit spending. Ok, well that didn’t stick, but on the campaign trail Barack Obama promised to “reinstate pay-as-you-go budget rules, so that new spending or tax cuts are paid for by spending cuts or revenue elsewhere.” He subsequently engaged in a trillion dollar spending binge that painted the nation’s ledger red with deficit spending. Well, that was a slip up, but now he’s was super serious when he said in his weekly internet address,

“Now, Congress will have to pay for what it spends, just like everybody else. . .  After a decade of profligacy, the American people are tired of politicians who talk the talk but don’t walk the walk when it comes to fiscal responsibility. It’s easy to get up in front of the cameras and rant against exploding deficits. What’s hard is actually getting deficits under control. But that’s what we must do.”

At least he got the first part right. Polls show that Americans, especially Millennials, are tired of the federal government’s big spending ways. A February poll by Rasmussen finds that among voters 18-29,

  • 74% are either very or somewhat concerned by the federal deficit
  • 68% believe that cutting the deficit would be better for the economy than the Keynesian approach of increasing deficit spending
  • 64% believe that increasing the deficit will hurt the economy
  • 85% thinkthat the government fails to spend taxpayer money wisely and carefully
  • 87% blame politicians unwillingness to reduce government spending as the cause of the federal deficit

Our fiscally frugal generation has been let down again. Far from being responsible, Congressional Democrats have found creative ways to work around the spirit of the Paygo law. For instance, the law exempts more than 50 federal programs from its reach – including the biggest ticket items like Social Security, the Medicare doc fix, and the alternative minimum tax patch. These tidy little exceptions are worth some $2.5 trillion; money that the government is not required to offset under Paygo.

The biggest farce comes in the form of an “emergency” exception. Patricia Murphy of Politics Daily explains,

“[A]lready, the Senate has issued itself a waiver from the provisions on three of the four spending bills it has considered by declaring several bills to be emergency spending, including a $15-billion jobs bill, a $10-billion measure for unemployment benefits and $100 billion package of tax extenders.”

If everything is the exception is there really a rule? We won’t (though we could) argue that there isn’t a unemployment emergency that requires government action. But, it does not follow that the government can’t make up for that spending elsewhere. As Olsson Frank Weeda of the Peterson-Pew Commission on Budget Reform makes clear,

“You can find there are so many places in discretionary spending that have been increased tremendously over the last two, three, four years that can be cut.”

On Tuesday Tom Coburn attempted to rein in the clear abuse of the Paygo law by introducing an amendment requiring the Senate to post the full cost of Paygo violation online for the public.  Of course the Senate passed it unanimously. To vote no would have been to uncover the swiss-cheese fiscal responsibility of Paygo. Nevertheless, Coburn is less than optimistic about his amendment’s chances to create lasting change to Democrats’ free spending ways. In an emailed statement he says,

“Today, minutes after the Senate accepted my amendment to post its violations of PAYGO online, Senators signaled their intent to remove this amendment from the bill before it goes to the President.  Taxpayers are tired of this cat and mouse game on spending and will hold Senators accountable if they want to be for transparency in words but not action.”

Unfortunately, Obama and the Democrats in Congress have perfected this game of cat and mouse. They say all the right things in public yet continue to drown our generation in red ink. Paygo is a good idea to get us back on track. There should be no exceptions.

by Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee

Read more: www.collegerepublicans.org

 

Millennial's Trust Deficit

 Trust is the oil that greases the wheels of a working Democracy. Hubert Humphrey, a liberal Democrat, realized as much, saying:

“Surely anyone who has ever been elected to public office understand that one commodity above all others, namely the trust and confidence of the people, is fundamental in maintaining a free and open political system.”

But as with everything in Washington these days, the federal government is operating under a deficit – a trust deficit. President Obama and Democratic leaders have given young adults very little reason to believe them. The result is that only 29% of 18-29 year olds trust the federal government to do the right thing. Worse, only 25% of young adults have faith in Congress to do what’s right.

Our generation has been provided with very little evidence that we should believe in what the government is doing. This point has been underscored most recently in the federal government’s tone deafness to the needs of young adults. A new Harvard Institute of Politics study shows that among Millennials the economy is the overwhelming concern.

The reasons for Millennials anxiety over the economy are deep and alarming. For instance the Harvard poll finds,

  • 84% of four-year college students said it would be difficult to find a job after graduation
  • 60% of Millennials are concerned with meeting their current bills and debts
  • 59% are worried about affording a place to live
  • 46% of those who were lucky enough to find work remain concerned about losing their job

The lack of trust is partially due to young American’s belief that the government is spending too much time and money on the wrong issues. In the State of the Union Obama proclaimed that “[c]reating jobs has to be our number one priority in 2010.”  Two months later, as job losses continue to mount, health care still dominates the headlines.

Millennials are taking notice of Democrat’s failure to address the economy while simultaneously spending away our chance at future prosperity. The result is a gradual shift of enthusiasm toward conservative candidates. As the Harvard poll explains,

When Millennials were disappointed by the outcome of the 2004 election, they organized in 2006 and rallied in 2008 for Barack Obama

Our generation again finds itself disappointed. This time, by the President’s unwillingness to address our generation’s dire fiscal future. Now it is time for us to organize and rally for change once again.

by Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee

Read more: www.collegerepublicans.org

 

Monomania? Obama’s Increasingly Schitzoid World.

Obama’s world view has room for few things in it other than himself. He came into office with a whole series of puzzling dichotomies orbiting around his condescending head. From “the sweetest sound I ever heard was the sound of the muezzin calling the faithful to prayers in the evening” to “my muslim faith”, (George Stephanopoulos quickly stepping in and saving Obama with “Your Christian faith?”). Obama: “My Christian faith”. Obama: “I have always been a Christian”. Obama: “The United States is not a Christian nation”.

He wants to cut taxes for households who do not pay federal taxes and increase taxes on households who provide jobs for low income families who would then be able to pay federal taxes. He says he wants a ‘vigorous and open debate‘ and then runs at breakneck speed to avoid it. Obama claimed he never prayed in a mosque. The facts proved otherwise. He claimed he was never a proponent of single payer universal health care, despite video-taped evidence to the contrary. He claims his remarks about ‘bitter’ Americans are taken out of context and then proceeds to repeat his attacks on gun owners, religious persons and an angry electorate with every reason to be angry.

He stated that his parents met at the Selma civil rights march. It happened four years after he was born. He claimed he never received money form big oil interests. He lied about that too.

Obama has a lot of mental baggage he carries around. One of the big problems with Obama is that he sees this country as some sort of overgrown third-world banana republic. He refuses to see this country for its universal exceptionalism. To do so would destroy everything he believes in. His core belief centers around an image of America and Americans that exists only in his egocentric world view, a world in which he is right and anything and anybody who dissents from that viewpoint is simply discarded. His globe-trotting apologist posturing before some of the planet’s most detestable tyrants says much about the lack of character of a man who denigrates the country which has not only nurtured him, but has improbably raised him to the highest office in the land.

His loyalties are divided… several times. His poorly denied devotion to the spirit of Islam colors everything about his dealings with world events. His philosophical sympathies follow the teachings of Alinsky, Marx and Lenin far more so than Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe or Lincoln. His commitment to this country, its constitution and its principles of freedom are problematic at best.

Divided loyalties make for really confused policy, foreign or domestic. His determination to advance a universally unpopular piece of legislation, despite the overwhelming disapproval of a virtually united electorate, without regard to the almost certain decimation of his party in the upcoming mid-term elections, is egomaniacal in the extreme. Once again, who are you working for Barack Hussein Obama?

Semper Vigilans, Semper Fidelis

© Skip MacLure 2010

 

Why the ACORN 8 Protect Obama and Lie to Conservatives

Last year ACORN alter ego Project Vote sued me for telling the people the ugly truth. Now the ACORN 8 are attacking me because I have acted on my belief that the people deserve truth, transparency and accountability. (The ACORN 8 slogan only calls for "truth, transparency and accountability within ACORN.") ACORN 8 spokesman Michael McCray recently noted in a hit piece on me that "others have waged a war of rhetoric and words against ACORN and President Obama" while the ACORN 8 "focused on criminality within the association" and described my allegation of "illegal coordination between Project Vote and Obama Campaign" as not having been "publicly verified."

Marcel Reid, as a former ACORN national board member and head of DC ACORN, understands the Obama/ACORN relationship AND the thuggish way ACORN pursues its goals.

Evidence exists that suggests that the ACORN 8's denial of illicit coordination between the Obama campaign and ACORN has more to do with the fact that unlike me, Reid and the ACORN 8 are still radical Obama supporters and that's why the ACORN 8 have avoided the subject of the Obama/ACORN relationship.

Fact: ACORN 8 leader Marcel Reid emailed me more than a year ago (before Heather Heidelbaugh, Esq.'s Congressional testimony based on my testimony in October 2008 in the Pennsylvania ACORN case, my appearances on Fox News and the sensational ACORN videos) that it is a "fact" that "ACORN isn't sure that it has it's fingers around Obama's throat quite as tightly as they would like" and "might do a little street theater" to "cower him into submission the way they have everyone else with few exceptions."

The Roots of Obama's Radical Agenda

Obama's poll numbers are sliding and his healthcare bill does not have public support, but he continues to push a radical agenda onto the American people. Could ACORN and its leftist allies like SEIU have Obama over a barrel? Someone like Reid, a former ACORN national board member, could have these answers.

Obama and Reid are both alums of the Marxist New Party, and Reid served as an officer of the party. The New Party is described this way:

"Co-founded in 1992 by Daniel Cantor (a former staffer for Jesse Jackson's 1988 presidential campaign) and Joel Rogers (a sociology and law professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison), the New Party was a Marxist political coalition whose objective was to endorse and elect leftist public officials -- most often Democrats. The New Party's short-term objective was to move the Democratic Party leftward, thereby setting the stage for the eventual rise of new Marxist third party.

Most New Party members hailed from the Democratic Socialists of America and the militant organization ACORN."

If the ACORN 8 are misleading America about their knowledge of ACORN's political activities and its relationship with Obama, what else are they lying about? Grab a cup of coffee and get comfy, we are going to dig into the accusations by McCray and the facts the ACORN 8 want to avoid. Note: Click on the pictures below to enlarge.

Fact checking the ACORN 8 Lie #1 "Mailroom MonCrief"

My article titled "For CPAC and Glenn Beck: the Truth About the ACORN 8" predictably produced a pained response from the ACORN 8: Michael McCray's article titled "ACORN Whistleblower / Anita Mailroom MonCrief" posted days later by James Murtagh. Instead of addressing allegations of an internal ACORN power struggle, the ACORN 8 have decided to present a set of lies as fact.  McCray's article is lacking in substance but high in rhetoric and misdirection, with even the title set up to misinform people and belittle the target, me.

Unsurprisingly, McCray was upset that I "refused [ACORN 8's] advice and pursued [my] own individual advocacy against ACORN and Project Vote" and he did not address on the merits the revelations about himself and the ACORN 8 in my article and instead tried to discredit me, as ACORN did. Contrary to what is stated in his article, I always knew that the ACORN 8 would cover for Obama and I declined to be a part of the group.

What was surprising is that McCray tried to discredit me with a sexist strategy ("hell hath no fury," he wrote) and a bogus description of me as a former ACORN mailroom employee.

"...perhaps the most damning revelation comes from court filed pleading by Anita MonCrief herself in her answer to Project Vote's $5 Million lawsuit against her Case No. 09-cv-01109 (RWR).

ANSWER OF DEFENDANT ASHAWNITA MONCRIEF

Paragraph #22 which reads

'22. Defendant [Anita MonCrief] admits that a Pitney Bowes postage meter machine was installed at Project Vote's Washington, D.C. office...

This is an incredible admission because it means that Anita MonCrief admits she worked in the mailroom at Project Vote...."

The ACORN/Project Vote Washington, D.C. office did not have a mailroom and, although I certainly don't disparage mailroom employees, I have never been one. I am equally surprised that a lawyer such as McCray, who is affiliated with several legal non-profits and who appears to have helped draft the ACORN 8's "civil RICO" complaint, would make such a demonstrably false claim.

In December of 2009 I appeared at a House Government Oversight and Reform Committee's  GOP Forum on ACORN and submitted the followed description of my duties at ACORN/Project Vote. A copy of the testimony is available here.

While at ACORN/Project Vote, I worked in the Strategic Writing and Research Department (SWORD) within ACORN’s Political Operations (POLOPS). As part of the SWORD staff my title was Writer/Researcher. My salary was paid by Project Vote, with which I held the title of Development Associate, but I had an ACORN email address.

In addition, to combat more revisionist history from the ACORN 8, here is an unmodified copy of ACORN's own 2006 Year End Year Beginning (YEYB) Report, the same one quoted recently at Andrew Breitbart's Big Government.

The ACORN 8 appear to be so comfortable with the fact that the lies they have told on national television about ACORN have largely gone unchallenged that McCray has decided to invent more.

Perhaps McCray did not check with other ACORN 8 people as to the access I had. And unfortunately for the ACORN 8 few of his outlandish accusations would pass muster at a middle school newspaper.  Using tactics honed through years of ACORN campaigns and organizing strategies, the ACORN 8 exhibit exactly the type of mentality that founder Wade Rathke encouraged in his ACORN Community Organizing Manual.

McCray strove to discredit me because the ACORN 8 could not disprove any number of facts stated in my previous article, so they resorted to common Alinsky tactics of ridiculing, polarizing and attacking the enemy. It is worth noting that ACORN and its affiliate Project Vote have taken legal action against its real threats, Andrew Breitbart, Hannah Giles, James O'Keefe and myself. All of us are victims of multimillion dollar lawsuits.

As this leaked internal ACORN email posted by National Review shows, ACORN talked to the lawyers about an employee because "he knows too much. He can hurt us." Surprisingly, besides a cease and desist letter, ACORN has largely left the ACORN 8 to spread their revisionist history. A history that did not pose a threat to ACORN's survival.

The other explanation could be that the leader of the ACORN 8 had signed a joint defense agreement (JDA) with ACORN that none of the other members were aware of. Did that include the other members of the ACORN 8?

In sharp contrast to McCray, the Republican National Lawyers Association expressed a different opinion of me in a blog post after I spoke at CPAC 2010.

"leading figure in the fight for fair elections" and the "ACORN whistleblower ACORN [who] had the CPAC crowd on its feet" by describing her experiences working with ACORN and how the organization engaged in a concerted effort to learn the provisional and absentee ballot laws in each of the 50 states in an effort to see where they could get away with mischief" and "achieved their ultimate goal of the Presidency with the election of Barack Obama"

Lie #2 Muscle of the Money?

Another excerpt from McCray's poorly written diatribe states:

"Mailroom MonCrief made two powerful allegations which have never been publicly verified (1) illegal coordination between Project Vote and Obama Campaign / Donor List and (2) SEIU Muscle for Money program which are two of the rights favorite accusations."

The funny thing about lies is that it is often hard to keep track of them. In October of 2008, as the ACORN 8 were struggling to gain attention with their lawsuit against Wade Rathke, I testified under oath about the Muscle for Money Program was the first mention of the program. ACORN 8 leaders Marcel Reid and Karen Inman feigned surprise and then recounted stories of reluctant participation.

Muscle for Money has generated significant opposition within ACORN.

"'I don’t mind being up on a soapbox to get someone’s attention but I would much rather talk an' negotiate, said Karen Inman, a Minnesota resident and former ACORN national board member. “But I just refuse to go someone’s home, that’s a privacy issue and I think this 'Muscle for Money' program really went too far.”

"Inman and Marcel Reid, a former board member based in Washington D.C., formed ACORN 8 in October 2008 …The lack of financial transparency and the continued use of Muscle for Money techniques remain top concerns for the whistleblower organization, which has about 30 dues paying members in multiple states, Inman said."

Reid also seems to have selective memory about her numerous press statements regarding Muscle for the Money and she apparently does not recognize the very evidence she provided. The following email provided by Reid, president of DC ACORN, is from Inga Skippings of the SEIU Equity Project regarding the Carlyle Group.

Reid also provided a similar email to CNN regarding SEIU/ACORN and bank bailouts.

The Fox News special titled "The Truth About ACORN" and broadcast on October 2, 2009 did not address the illegal coordination, but it certainly covered the second, with guest Marcel Reid claiming that she was shocked to learn what "Money for the Muscle" involved when she participated in it with National Paint and Coating as the target. The video can be accessed here and Marcel's statement begins around minute 16.

Lie #3 The ACORN 8 exposed a one million dollar embezzlement scandal

Further proof of the ACORN 8's self-serving revisionist history lies in the following statement from their “response article":

Marcel Reid a former ACORN Board member (DC) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and co-founder of ACORN 8;

Karen Inman a former ACORN Board member (MN) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and co-founder of ACORN 8;

Michael McCray a former ACORN Board delegate (GA) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and ACORN 8 spokesperson;

Nonsense. There is a whistleblower to credit. Neither Marcel Reid, nor Karen Inman, nor Michael McCray was that whistleblower. While working as a confidential source for the New York Times, I found out that not only is the real anonymous whistleblower known to the ACORN 8 but also New York Times Reporter Stephanie Strom. The ACORN embezzlement story was made public by The New York Times on July 9, 2008:

"A whistle-blower forced Acorn to disclose the embezzlement, which involved the brother of the organization’s founder, Wade Rathke. 'We’ve told them that when the process is ended, we’ll have a look at it,' said Dave Beckwith, executive director of the Needmor Fund, which has given money to some of Acorn’s charity affiliates for at least 10 years and was contacted by the whistle-blower in May."

So here is the time-line:

May 2008- ACORN funder, the Needmor fund was contacted by a whistleblower in May.

July 2008- Bertha Lewis, Marcel Reid and Karen Innman all appointed to positions of power within ACORN. New York Times article appeared.

August 2008- After the proposed hand over to Kappa Alpha Psi Federal Credit Union was declined by ACORN and CCI, Marcel and Innman sued CCI and Rathke.

That time-line hints at the truth behind ACORN insider allegations that the plotters of a successful coup began to immediately fight amongst each for control. Court documents point to Reid's relationship with KAPFCU and the question of whether she was really acting on behalf of ACORN:

So far it has been established that the ACORN 8 have a serious problem with the truth if it does not suit their needs and/or financial goals and we have learned that they are hesitant to debate the facts of my argument.

Over a once Mighty Oak, Tiny Nuts Fight for Control

ACORN insiders paint a tale of internal strife and power struggles that date back to at least 2006. On page 37 of the aforementioned ACORN YEYB report, ACORN Wade Rathke hinted at this struggle:

“Leadership Maude Hurd, as President, and her team continue to be somewhat embattled but opposition has become more specific and marginalized on many issues. It is easiest to understand the national board though these days as having two parties: the ruling party and the opposition party. Some progress was made in some ways in the October meeting in moving the opposition party to being more of a 'loyal' opposition, and that is a hopeful sign, if it continues to trend.”

Evidence exists to suggest the departure of Wade Rathke as a result of a whistleblower disclosing the embezzlement scandal permitted the opposition party to use the embezzlement to gain control. ACORN board meeting notes seem to suggest at the alliance between Marcel Reid, Karen Inman and Bertha Lewis that was exposed in my prior article

Bertha takes control:

 

 

 

Lie #4 KAPFCU

In addition, Michael McCray appears to be very upset that his connection to KAPFCU has been exposed and so he tried to rewrite history.

"KAPFCU was contracted by an ACORN management committee to investigate and perform due diligence following the $1 Million embezzlement...."

I told the real story in "For CPAC and Glenn Beck, The Truth About the ACORN 8," backed with citations and screen shots but I do have additional research.

Apparently, Reid's unsolicited proposal from Michael McCray's Kappa Alpha Psi Federal Credit Union (KAPFCU) could be considered part of  the opposition party of the ACORN board strategy to control ACORN for their own gain.

The proposed agreement between ACORN and KAPFCU was an attempt to wrestle control of CCI's ACORN business for the benefit of KAPFCU without disclosing a potential conflict of interest.. As a member of the associate board, McCray had significant financial interest in this deal. Fourth quarter reports show a net worth of just over $831,083.41 for KAPFCU, so one can assume that millions of dollars a year and control of ACORN's vast financial network may have been incentive for the ACORN 8's next actions.

When the proposal was not immediately accepted, Inman and Reid descended on New Orleans with an attorney ACORN insiders claim was hired and paid for by the KAPFCU. The ACORN 8 hired James Gray, the former law partner of William “Cold Cash” Jefferson.

What followed can only be described as misleading press pieces and self-serving statements such as the ones below. The ACORN 8's lawsuit filed in Louisiana District Court (ACORN vs. Rathke, et al., case no. 08-8342,) was dismissed, but a number of misleading articles and statements made their way into the press.

ACORN insiders state that Reid manipulated the situation. When their deception was revealed to the board, a number of members voted to withdraw the lawsuit and then to remove Reid and Inman. According to ACORN Association board meeting notes dated June 20, 2008, Bertha Lewis and Steve Kest were tasked with hiring professional consultants, not Reid. Inman and Reid's positions were temporary and the committee reported to the entire board. Reid was expected to  step down at the next board meeting in October of 2008.

The ACORN 8 paint a scenario of ACORN leadership throwing them out, but their peers voted for each action including one of their own ACORN 8 members. Coya Mobley initially voted to withdraw the lawsuit, but changed her mind three days later in a rambling email to the board:

“He is beating us down as if he was our Slave Master with a whip and still creeping into our homes to take what ever he can get. And, all we are going to do is say Master please don't whip me any more, don't rape me any more, don't master don't!!!!!!!!! WAKE UP PEOPLE..........SLAVERY IS OVER..........STOP THIS MADNESS AND GET OFF OF WADE RATHKE'S TRAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!. “

Mobley repeated the same sentiment on the 6/22/2009 episode Glenn Beck show in a video that has been yanked from the web.

As this is the only video of the ACORN 8 on Glenn Beck that has disappeared, one has to wonder if the removal of the video may have something to do with the embarrassing admission of active participation in the Muscle for Money program.

The Root of All Evil

Michael McCray's KAPFCU is the nation's first "virtual credit union” and as a small credit union, KAPFCU is constantly looking for opportunities to grow:

“In 2008, KAPFCU has applied for $100k in financial assistance and $500k in technical assistance.

...Vic also announced that there’s a $1.2B credit union in Baton Rouge that is designated as a low-income institution. This allows them to take in secondary capital, and not affect their net income ratio. KAPFCU is currently at 3.18%. The NCUA would like us to be at 7%. So, the low-income designation is one of the vehicles that KAPFCU plans to utilize to increase its net income ratio."

In what appears to be a closely knit network of affiliated organizations with the same board members and suspect motives the ACORN 8 are really similar to ACORN. PRWeb searches show press releases where the related organizations laud each other (here, and here)  and in some cases bestow newly created awards on members of the group. My prior article touched on this network, but research has uncovered additional affiliates of the ACORN 8. The new list is as follows:

The Congress Against Racism and Corruption in Law Enforcement (CARCLE)

Power Over Poverty Under Laws of America Restored (POPULAR)

The ACORN 8

The International Association of Whistle-blowers (IAW)

National Judicial Conduct and Disability Law Project

The 3.5.7 Commission (appears to be inactive)

The E-Accountability Project

Focus on Indiana

National Forum On Judicial Accountability (NFOJA), the official network of Community Forums on Judicial Accountability (CFOJA)

As the KAPFCU Administrator of Community Development Financial Initiatives, McCray seems well placed to coordinate the activities of the organizations, including lending the KAPFCU name to rival ACORN projects:

By starting an organization in direct competition with ACORN and then “Whistle-blowing” on ACORN, the ACORN 8 appears to have deceived America into believing that their intentions were noble.

 

The biggest PR move involved the so-called Department of Justice complaint. The complaint to the DOJ addressed the embezzlement scandal and used a number of examples to support their "civil RICO" complaint. No disputing the facts here, ACORN is corrupt. However, what is missing from the complaint is intriguing and ties the ACORN 8 back to Obama. Reid appeared eager to file the complaint and was even ready to send it to the press without some exhibits being prepared by the lawyers (screenshot below).

 

 

 

At the last minute the complaint was amended to protect Obama’s mentor, former ACORN leader, Madeline Talbott and her husband, Keith Kelleher. Talbott, is also a fellow New Party alum of Reid and Obama. National Review Online provides the background:

"ACORN’s leading role in the New Party as the result of a conscious decision by the organization to move into electoral politics in a more substantial way than they had been able to solely through their political action committee. In addition to [Wade] Rathke and [Zach] Polett, a key early supporter of the New Party was Obama’s closest ACORN contact, Madeline Talbott."

The startling fact about the "Department of Justice Complaint" is that when filed in District Court by an ACORN 8 member, it was dismissed. Despite the presence of lawyers McCray, and Zena Crenshaw Logal in the ACORN 8, the complaint was found to lack the basic requirement of a cause of action.

"In the law, a cause of action (sometimes called a claim) is a set of facts sufficient to justify a right to sue."

 

 

 

The judge dismissed on the grounds that the complaint lacked standing and a cause of action, but it did generate the desired media attention the ACORN 8 needed after the Rathke case was dismissed. Click here to read the entire decision.

Dissecting McCray's Final Lies Lie #5 Disparaging other ACORN Whistleblowers

McCray, a co-chair of the International Association of Whistleblowers, used the "MGM" acronym for myself, Michael Gaynor and Michelle Malkin without crediting the originator, blogger Michael Volpe. McCray seems to adopt the same faulty logic as Volpe, who assumes that if someone I know writes a piece about a person or even mentions their names, that is disparagement. For the record, I have never attacked Greg Hall, Hannah James, James O'Keefe or any of the others named in McCray's rant. Mentioning someone or pointing out facts in regards to the ACORN 8 is not meant to disparage (unless the truth is damaging for that individual).

"Mailroom MonCrief, offered one piece of information purporting to link Project Vote and the Obama campaign which has yet to be publicly proved. She studied the ACORN 8 website and presented our arguments and information as her own until the ACORN 8 cut her off. She became frustrated and resentful having no other contacts or access to inside information, and so she began to attack Marcel Reid, the ACORN 8 and any other noteworthy ACORN critic."

Two quick things here;  first, besides some puff pieces about the embezzlement and a failed lawsuit against ACORN, the bulk of the ACORN 8's accusations only involved actions related to the board and their financial rival in the KAPFCU deal, CCI. It was only after my October 2008 testimony, that the ACORN 8 started to acknowledge real ACORN criminality.

Second, if one were to apply McCray's logic, then HE would be accused of attacking James Murtagh, the other co-chair of the International Association of Whistleblowers, or these statements by Volpe, who wrote at length about Murtagh,

"Dr. Murtagh was paid off to the tune of 1.6 million dollars and silenced at the exact same time that the NIH was investigating Grady Hospital..."

Volpe continued:

"Former Grady trustee Bill Loughrey tells me that the settlement with Dr. Murtagh was never approved or even accurately described to Grady’s board of trustees. He says that he was stunned to learn that tax dollars were paid to Dr. Murtagh, conditioned on his silence. He thinks the agreement is invalid and that the judicial process has been misused."

Volpe is a minor character in the ACORN 8 story, but he offers an opening to explore a pattern of behavior by Marcel Reid of lying and manipulating bloggers and some media persons.

Volpe's reward for writing hit pieces on Reid's enemies was a recommendation of his Wade Rathke interview to Breitbart's Big Government. Reid helped a so-so writer with a very small following gain access and attention he could not have gotten on his own . As the screen shot of a misdirected email below illustrates, Reid is quite content to pull the strings and let others do her dirty work. While she "lols", her fingerprints are covered by so-called bloggers like Volpe.

Bloggers and journalists who have written favorable pieces on the ACORN 8 have been granted appearances on "Beck". Including the late blogger Nancy Armstrong (MsPlaced Democrat).

Print journalists Kevin Mooney and his friend Matthew Vadum, associates of both myself and the ACORN 8, both made appearances during “ACORN 8 week.” Marcel and I worked on a number of pieces with both Vadum and Mooney, who have been responsible for a number of breaking pieces on ACORN. Vadum and I have also appeared on the G. Gordon Liddy Show.

Lie #5 "Rage Against the Beck"

In yet another ridiculous error-filled and sexist claim McCray states that:

“On March 13, 2009 [This should be May 13, 2009] U.S. Representative Michelle Bauchman [It's Michele Bachmann] (R-MN) appeared on the Glenn Beck show and announced a press conference she was having on Capital [This should be Capitol] Hill. Rep. Michelle Bauchman [Michele Bachmann] disclosed the topic was ACORN and she invited both Marcel Reid and Anita MonCrief to participate in the event. In response, Glenn Beck encouraged Michelle Bauchman [Michele Bachmann] to continue to put pressure on ACORN but he advised her to be careful with Anita MonCrief considering her checkered past. From that day forward Anita MonCrief has engaged in a personal vendetta against Beck, Reid and ACORN 8 for the slight she believes she received from Glenn Beck on March 13, 2009 [May 13, 2009] - hell hath no fury. “

What McCray does not state is that Marcel Reid had promised Beck's producers that she would deliver me as she had promised other whistleblowers and ACORN experts to Beck. On May 10, 2009 while reviewing the Elizabeth Kingsley report with Marcel, I took a call from Susan Wertheim of the Beck show on Marcel's phone. Here is the follow up email Susan sent.

I had begun working with a Eric Shawn of Fox's America's News Headquarters. I trusted Shawn's work on ACORN and finally decided to go on TV and tell my story. On Mother's Day, I appeared with Shawn and the Nevada Secretary of State.

This appearance had been in the works for sometime and Marcel was aware of this, so when I got the following email from Beck's Producers, I assumed that Marcel had arranged it and gave her the back story.

Megyn Kelly interviewed me the next day, and Beck wanted me for that evening. Things went a little haywire because, as a novice, I did not know that by accepting Megyn's invitation that I would upset Beck's producer Susan, and what followed is a clear indication of how alliances can compromise the integrity of a story. Susan lectured me on the competition for guests at Fox and indicated that I had committed some type of faux paus by appearing on anything but Beck first.

Just two short months after the March show with the RNLA's  Cleta Mitchell, on which I declined to be interviewed, but for which I provided important background on the AIG bus tour, Beck began warning others, including Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, to stay away from me in favor of the ACORN 8.

Michael McCray appeared in my place in what became "ACORN 8 Day."

Despite Beck's slight, even he can not deny that I have provided much evidence connecting ACORN/Project Vote and Obama. The problem with me seemed to lie in the fact that Reid could not control me and make me appear on "Beck" at her command, and it apparently became easier to spread lies than to deal with someone who would not compromise herself for Reid's power grab. Just a month later,  Beck did not mind relying on my blog for information that would serve as the background for at least two of his shows.

Realizing that we can not let the Left silence us, I put my feelings about Beck's comments to Bachmann aside, and supported Beck during a summer boycott of his advertisers by the Van Jones affiliated Color of Change.

McCray insinuated that I attacked Beck in my first piece, but instead I pointed out the same inconsistencies in his approach that many other conservatives like Mark Levin have pointed out. Did the ACORN 8 fool Beck? After all, McCray portrays himself and his ACORN 8 allies as friends of the conservative movement.

"MonCrief is featured favorably in the OGR committee report along with Karen Inman, Michael McCray, the ACORN 8 and Marcel Reid who also attended the conservative convention."

Marcel Reid is about as conservative as Max Blumenthal, who also showed up for his own purposes at CPAC 2010.

Lie #6 The ACORN 8 are allies of the conservative movement

The ACORN 8 use conservatives for their own purposes and those conservatives either do not know the reality of the ACORN 8 or accept the ACORN 8 as an enemy of their enemy.

McCray went on to state:

"We have never professed to be anti-ACORN or anti-Obama. Although many other conservative activists want us to be; which brings us back to Anita MonCrief."

"While others have waged a war of rhetoric and words against ACORN and President Obama we have focused on criminality within the association.... We have not criticized others for their activism and collaborate with those whom we share common interests; and we respectfully disengage from those who do not share our goals or approach."

As one blogger put it at Hot Air in a post about Beck, "Its not conservative"

Lie #7 Anita MonCrief is a thief

Beck's CPAC speech mentioned 'redemption' a number of times and like it or not, he did make some powerful points. By admitting that he is not perfect, he opens a door to himself and let's people in. People love him for his boldness and the way he interacts. Redemption means acknowledging fault and being vulnerable in a public way. I'm not perfect, as I've explained repeatedly (hereherehere, and here ) but I admitted that I was on the wrong path.

Despite the way Beck speaks of redemption, he still used the fact that I put personal expenses on a Project Vote credit card to warn Bachmann away, a tactic used repeatedly by the ACORN 8. The ACORN 8 have joined ACORN in trying to discredit me now that I am exposing them. I testified under oath regarding the credit card matter and discussed it on "The Laura Ingraham Show" in October 2008. Contrary to what McCray would like you to believe, I did not try to pass my expenses off as company expenses and was paying the balance. I wrote about it extensively here.

Conclusions

I have addressed the allegations made by McCray in his piece without alliteration, slogans or lies.  On the other hand, the ACORN 8 have done everything to paint themselves in a favorable light while bullying and marginalizing anyone who dares to speak the truth about them

The irony is that as America fights back against Obama's dictator-like attitude towards passing healthcare, we are continuing to make the same mistakes of the past. ACORN was funded during Republican administrations because we did not have our own infrastructures in the minority and low-income areas. Unfortunately for Republicans and conservatives is that what was most expedient was also most harmful. ACORN invaded our schools, toyed with our banks, wrecked havoc on the electoral system, and laid the groundwork for a permanent leftist majority. By aligning ourselves with radicals to solve one problem, we create others. The ACORN 8 have been conning conservatives and protecting Obama and his dangerous agenda.

My article titled "For CPAC and Glenn Beck: the Truth About the ACORN 8" predictably produced a pained response from the ACORN 8: ACORN 8 spokesman Michael McCray's article titled "ACORN Whistleblower / Anita Mailroom MonCrief" posted days later by James Murtagh. Lacking in substance but high in rhetoric and lies, even the title set up to misinform people and belittle the target, me.Unsurprisingly, McCray was upset that I "refused [ACORN 8's] advice and pursued [my] own individual advocacy against ACORN and Project Vote" and he did not address on the merits the revelations about himself and the ACORN 8 in my article and instead tried to discredit me, as ACORN did.What was surprising is that McCray tried to discredit me with a sexist strategy (hell hath no fury," he wrote) and a bogus description of me as a former ACORN mailroom employee.

"...perhaps the most damning revelation comes from court filed pleading by Anita MonCrief herself in her answer to Project Vote's $5 Million lawsuit against her Case No. 09-cv-01109 (RWR).

ANSWER OF DEFENDANT ASHAWNITA MONCRIEF

Paragraph #22 which reads

'22. Defendant [Anita MonCrief] admits that a Pitney Bowes postage meter machine was installed at Project Vote's Washington, D.C. office. Defendant affirmatively states that she [Anita MonCrief] was named by Project Vote as the registered user of the machine and therefore subsequent mailings from Pitney Bowes were addressed to her. Defendant denies each and every remaining or inconsistent allegation contained in paragraph 22.'

This is an incredible admission because it means that Anita MonCrief admits she worked in the mailroom at Project Vote...."

The ACORN/Project Vote Washington, D.C. office did not have a mailroom and, although I certainly don't disparage mailroom employees, I have never been one. I am equally surprised that a lawyer such as McCray, who is affiliated with several legal non-profits and who appears to have helped draft the ACORN 8's "civil RICO" complaint; would make such erroneous legal conclusions. Especially considering that there is demonstrable evidence to the contrary.

In December of 2009 I appeared at a GOP ACORN Forum and submitted the followed description of my duties at ACORN/Project Vote. A copy of the testimony is available here.

While at ACORN/Project Vote, I worked in the Strategic Writing and Research Department (SWORD) within ACORN’s Political Operations (POLOPS). As part of the SWORD staff my title was Writer/Researcher. My salary was paid by Project Vote, with which I held the title of Development Associate, but I had an ACORN email address.

Of course, to combat more revisionist history from the ACORN 8, here is an unmodified copy of ACORN's own 2006 Year End Year Beginning (YEYB) Report, the same one quoted recently at Andrew Breitbart's Big Government.

The ACORN 8 appear to be so comfortable with the fact that the lies they have told on national television about ACORN have largely gone unchallenged so  McCray has decided to invent more:

"Anita MonCrief is not a high-level associate she worked in the mailroom;

"Anita MonCrief did not have access to boardroom minutes or financial information she worked in the mailroom

"Anita MonCrief has no way of knowing the inner workings of SEIU whether official or unofficial she worked in the mailroom;

"Anita MonCrief couldn't know how much the embezzlement really was she worked in the mailroom...."

Apparently McCray did not check with other ACORN 8 people as to the access I had. And unfortunately for the ACORN 8 few of his outlandish accusations would pass muster at a middle school newspaper.  Using tactics honed through years of ACORN campaigns and organizing strategies, the ACORN 8 exhibit exactly the type of mentality that Wade encouraged in his ACORN Community Organizing Manual.

McCray strove to discredit me because the ACORN 8 could not directly address any number of facts stated in the previous article and they resorted to common Alinsky tactics of ridiculing, polarizing and attacking the enemy.

In sharp contrast to McCray, the Republican National Lawyers Association identified me as a

"leading figure in the fight for fair elections" and the "ACORN whistleblower ACORN [who] had the CPAC crowd on its feet" by describing my "experiences working with ACORN and how the organization engaged in a concerted effort to learn the provisional and absentee ballot laws in each of the 50 states in an effort to see where they could get away with mischief" and "achieved their ultimate goal of the Presidency with the election of Barack Obama"

when I spoke at CPAC 2010 last February 2010. Similarly, the United States House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Governmental Reform staff report titled "Follow the Money: ACORN, SEIU and Their Political Allies" described me as

"a former political operations staff member for ACORN and Project Vote" (p. 8), reported that "information obtained by our committee confirms MonCrief's allegations" (p. 46).

Another excerpt from McCray's poorly written diatribe states:

"Mailroom MonCrief made two powerful allegations which have never been publicly verified (1) illegal coordination between Project Vote and Obama Campaign / Donor List and (2) SEIU Muscle for Money program which are two of the rights favorite accusations."

The funny thing about lies is that it is often hard to keep track of them. In October of 2008, as the ACORN 8 were struggling to gain attention with their lawsuit against Wade Rathke, I testified under oath about the Muscle for Money Program which was the first mention of the program. ACORN 8 leaders Marcel Reid and Karen Innman feigned surprise and then recounted stories of reluctant participation.

Muscle for Money has generated significant opposition within ACORN.

'I don’t mind being up on a soapbox to get someone’s attention but I would much rather talk an' negotiate, said Karen Inman, a Minnesota resident and former ACORN national board member. “But I just refuse to go someone’s home, that’s a privacy issue and I think this “Muscle for Money” program really went too far.”

Inman and Marcel Reid, a former board member based in Washington D.C., formed ACORN 8 in October 2008 …

The lack of financial transparency and the continued use of Muscle for Money techniques remain top concerns for the whistleblower organization, which has about 30 dues paying members in multiple states, Inman said.

Reid also seems to have selective memory about her numerous press statements regarding Muscle for the Money and she apparently does not recognize the very evidence she provided. The following email provided by Reid, president of DC ACORN, is from Inga Skippings of the SEIU Equity Project regarding the Carlyle Group.

Reid also provided a similar email to CNN regarding SEIU/ACORN and bank bailouts.

The Fox News special titled "The Truth About ACORN" and broadcast on October 2, 2009 did not address the illegal coordination, but it certainly covered the second, with guest Marcel Reid claiming that she was shocked to learn what "Money for the Muscle" involved when she participated in it with National Paint and Coating as the target. The video can be accessed here and Marcel's statement begins around minute 16.

Further proof of the ACORN 8's self serving revisionist history lies in the following statement from their “response article:”

Marcel Reid a former ACORN Board member (DC) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and co-founder of ACORN 8;

Karen Inman a former ACORN Board member (MN) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and co-founder of ACORN 8;

Michael McCray a former ACORN Board delegate (GA) who blew the whistle following the $1 Million Embezzlement and ACORN 8 spokesperson;

Nonsense. There is a whistleblower to credit. Neither Marcel Reid, nor Karen Inman, nor Michael McCray was that whistleblower. While working as a confidential source for the New York Times I found out that not only is the real anonymous whistleblower known to the ACORN 8 but also New York Times Reporter Stephanie Strom. The ACORN embezzlement story was made public by The New York Times on July 9, 2008:

"A whistle-blower forced Acorn to disclose the embezzlement, which involved the brother of the organization’s founder, Wade Rathke.

"We’ve told them that when the process is ended, we’ll have a look at it,' said Dave Beckwith, executive director of the Needmor Fund, which has given money to some of Acorn’s charity affiliates for at least 10 years and was contacted by the whistle-blower in May."

May? Lets stay here for a second because the ACORN 8's heroic story is starting to unravel. According to court documents filed in Louisiana in August of this year, the scandal was discovered in April of 2008 by the full board of ACORN. So here is the timeline:

April- ACORN board discovers embezzlement

May- ACORN funder, the Needmor fund was contacted by a whistleblower in May.

July- Bertha Lewis, Marcel Reid and Karen Innman all appointed to positions of power within ACORN

August - After the proposed hand over to Kappa Alpha Psi Federal Credit Union is declined by ACORN and CCI, Marcel and Innman sue CCI and Rathke with KAPFCU as co-plaintiffs.

That time-line hints at the truth behind ACORN insider allegations that the plotters of a successful coup began to immediately fight amongst each for control. Court documents point to Reid's relationship with KAPFCU and the question of whether she was really acting on behalf of ACORN:

So far it has been established that the ACORN 8 has a serious problem with the truth, if it does not suit their needs and/or financial goals and we have learned that they are somewhat hesitant to debate the facts of my argument. Grab a cup of coffee and get comfy, we are going to dig into the accusations by McCray and the facts the ACORN want to avoid.

Over a once Mighty Oak, Tiny Nuts Fight for Control

ACORN insiders paint a tale of internal strife and power struggles that date back to at least 2006. On page 37 of the aforementioned ACORN YEYB report ACORN Wade Rathke hints at this struggle:

“Leadership Maude Hurd, as President, and her team continue to be somewhat embattled but opposition has become more specific and marginalized on many issues. It is easiest to understand the national board though these days as having two parties: the ruling party and the opposition party. Some progress was made in some ways in the October meeting in moving the opposition party to being more of a 'loyal' opposition, and that is a hopeful sign, if it continues to trend.”

Evidence exists to suggest the departure of Wade Rathke as a result of a whistleblower disclosing the embezzlement scandal permitted the opposition party to use the embezzlement scandal to gain control. ACORN board meeting notes seem to suggest at the alliance between Marcel Reid, Karen Innman and Bertha Lewis that was exposed in my prior article

Bertha takes control:

 

McCray appears to be very upset that his connection to KAPFCU has been exposed and so he tried to rewrite history.

"KAPFCU was contracted by an ACORN management committee to investigate and perform due diligence following the $1 Million embezzlement...."

I told the real story in "For CPAC and Glenn Beck: the Truth About the ACORN 8," backed with citations and screen shots but I do have additional research.

Apparently, Reid's unsolicited proposal from Michael McCray's Kappa Alpha Psi Federal Credit Union (KAPFCU) could be considered part of  the opposition party of the ACORN board strategy to control ACORN for their own gain.

The proposed agreement between ACORN and KAPFCU was an attempt to wrestle control of CCI and turn all asset and decision making over to an organization that none of the ACORN 8 disclosed was a potential conflict of interest. As a member of the advisory board, McCray had significant financial interest in this deal. Fourth quarter reports show a net worth of just over $831,000 so one can assume that millions of dollars a year and control of ACORN's vast financial network may have been incentive for the ACORN 8's next actions.

When the proposal was not immediately accepted, Innman and Reid descended on New Orleans with an attorney hired and paid for by the KAPFCU. The ACORN 8 hired James Gray, the former law partner of William “Cold Cash” Jefferson.

What followed can only be described as misleading press pieces and self serving statements such as the ones below.

ACORN insiders state that Reid manipulated the situation and made demands outside of her power. When their deception was revealed to the board, a number of members voted to withdraw the lawsuit and then to remove Reid and Innman. According to ACORN Association board meeting notes dated July 13, 2008, Bertha Lewis and Steve Kest were tasked with hiring professional consultants, not Reid. Innman and Reid's positions were temporary and the committee reported to the entire board. Reid was expected to  step down at the next board meeting in October of 2008.

The ACORN 8 paint a scenario of ACORN leadership throwing them out, but their peers voted for each action including one of their own ACORN 8 members. Coya Mobley initially voted to withdraw the lawsuit, but changed her, mind three days later in a rambling email to the board:

“ He is beating us down as if he was our Slave Master with a whip and still creeping into our homes to take what ever he can get. And, all we are going to do is say Master please don't whip me any more, don't rape me any more, don't master don't!!!!!!!!! WAKE UP PEOPLE..........SLAVERY IS OVER..........STOP THIS MADNESS AND GET OFF OF WADE RATHKE'S TRAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!. “

Mobley repeated the same sentiment on the 6/22/2009 episode Glenn Beck show in a video that has been yanked from the web.

As this is the only video of the ACORN 8 on Glenn Beck that has disappeared, one has to wonder if the removal of the video may have something to do with the embarrassing admission of active participation in the Muscle for Money program.

The Root of All Evil

Michael McCray's KAPFCU is the nation's first "virtual credit union” and as a small credit union, KAPFCU is constantly looking for opportunities to grow:

“In 2008, KAPFCU has applied for $100k in financial assistance and $500k in technical assistance.

...Vic also announced that there’s a $1.2B credit union in Baton Rouge that is designated as a low-income institution. This allows them to take in secondary capital, and not affect their net income ratio. KAPFCU is currently at 3.18%. The NCUA would like us to be at 7%. So, the low-income designation is one of the vehicles that KAPFCU plans to utilize to increase its net income ratio."

In what appears to be a vast network of affiliated organizations with the same board members and suspicious motives the ACORN 8 is really similar to ACORN. My prior article touched on this network, but research has uncovered additional affiliates of the ACORN 8. The new list is a follows:

The Congress Against Racism and Corruption in Law Enforcement (CARCLE)

Power Over Poverty Under Laws of America Restored (POPULAR)

The ACORN 8

The International Association of Whistle-blowers (IAW)

National Judicial Conduct and Disability Law Project

The 3.5.7 Commission (appears to be inactive)

The E-Accountability Project

Focus on Indiana

National Forum On Judicial Accountability (NFOJA), the official network of Community Forums on Judicial Accountability (CFOJA)

As the KAPFCU Administrator of Community Development Financial Initiatives, McCray seems well placed to coordinate the activities of the organizations, including lending the KAPFCU name to rival ACORN projects:

By starting an organization in direct competition with ACORN and then “Whistle-blowing” on ACORN, the ACORN 8 appears to have deceived America into believe their intentions were noble.

Dissecting McCray's Final Lies

McCray, a co-chair of the International Association of Whistleblowers, used the "MGM" acronym for myself, Michael Gaynor and Michelle Malkin without crediting the originator, blogger Michael Volpe. McCray seems to adopt to came faulty logic as Volpe who assumes that if someone I know writes a piece about a person or even mentions their names, that is it disparagement. For the record, I have never attacked Greg Hall, Hannah James, James O'Keefe or any of the others named in McCray's rant. Mentioning someone or pointing out facts in regards to the ACORN 8 is not meant to disparage (unless the truth is damaging for that individual).

"Mailroom MonCrief, offered one piece of information purporting to link Project Vote and the Obama campaign which has yet to be publicly proved. She studied the ACORN 8 website and presented our arguments and information as her own until the ACORN 8 cut her off. She became frustrated and resentful having no other contacts or access to inside information, and so she began to attack Marcel Reid, the ACORN 8 and any other noteworthy ACORN critic."

Two quick things here, first besides some puff pieces about the embezzlement and a failed lawsuit against ACORN, the bulk of their accusations from bIf one were to apply McCray's logic, then HE would be accused of attacking James Murtagh, the other co-chair of the International Association of Whistleblowers,  for these statements by Volpe's, who wrote at length about Murtagh,

"Dr. Murtagh was paid off to the tune of 1.6 million dollars and silenced at the exact same time that the NIH was investigating Grady Hospital..."

Volpe continues:

"Former Grady trustee Bill Loughrey tells me that the settlement with Dr. Murtagh was never approved or even accurately described to Grady’s board of trustees. He says that he was stunned to learn that tax dollars were paid to Dr. Murtagh, conditioned on his silence. He thinks the agreement is invalid and that the judicial process has been misused."

Volpe is a minor character in the ACORN 8 story, but he offers an opening to explore a pattern of behavior by Marcel Reid of lying and manipulating bloggers and some media persons.

Volpe's reward for writing hit pieces on Reid's enemies was a recommendation of his Wade Rathke interview  to Breitbart's Big Government. As a so-so writer with a very small following, Reid  helped Volpe gain access he could not have gotten on his own. As the screen shot of a misdirected email below illustrates, Reid is quite content to pull the strings and let others do her dirty work. While she sits back and laughs, her fingerprints are covered by so called bloggers like Volpe.

Bloggers and journalists who have written favorable pieces on the ACORN 8 have been granted appearances on "Beck". Including the late blogger Nancy Armstrong (MsPlaced Democrat).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUE7tWigD8A

Print journalists Kevin Mooney and his friend Matthew Vadum associates of both myself and the ACORN 8 both made appearances during “ACORN 8 week.”

In yet another ridiculous error- filledand sexist claim McCray states that:

“On March 13, 2009 [This should be May 13, 2009] U.S. Representative Michelle Bauchman [It's Michele Bachmann] (R-MN) appeared on the Glenn Beck show and announced a press conference she was having on Capital [This should be Capitol] Hill. Rep. Michelle Bauchman [Michele Bachmann] disclosed the topic was ACORN and she invited both Marcel Reid and Anita MonCrief to participate in the event. In response, Glenn Beck encouraged Michelle Bauchman [Michele Bachmann] to continue to put pressure on ACORN but he advised her to be careful with Anita MonCrief considering her checkered past. From that day forward Anita MonCrief has engaged in a personal vendetta against Beck, Reid and ACORN 8 for the slight she believes she received from Glenn Beck on March 13, 2009 [May 13, 2009] - hell hath no fury. “

What McCray does not state is that Marcel Reid had promised Beck's producers that she would deliver me as she had promised other whistleblowers to Beck. On May 10, 2009 while reviewing the Elizabeth Kingsley report with Marcel, I took a call from Susan Wertheim of the Beck show on Marcel's phone. Here is the follow up email Susan sent.

I had begun working with a Eric Shawn of Fox's America's News Headquarters. I trusted Shawn's work on ACORN and finally decided to go on TV and tell my story. This appearance had been in the works for sometime and Marcel was aware of this, so when I got the following email from Beck's Producers, I assumed that Marcel had arranged it and gave her the back story.

Megyn Kelly interviewed me the next day, and Beck wanted me for that evening. Things went a little haywire because, as a novice, I did not know that by accepting Megyn's invitation that I would upset Beck's producer Susan, and what followed is a clear indication of how alliances can compromise the integrity of a story. Just two short months after the March show with Cleta Mitchell, where I declined to be interviewed, but provided important background on the AIG bus tour, Beck began warning others to stay away from me in favor of the ACORN 8, including Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lg7eQK64Ymw

Despite Beck's slight, even he can not deny that I have provided much evidence connecting ACORN/Project Vote and Obama. The problem with me seemed to lie in the fact that Reid could not control me and make me appear on Beck at her command, and it apparently became easier to spread lies than to deal with someone who would not compromise herself for Reid's power grab. Just a month later,  Beck did not mind relying on my blog for information that would serve as the background for at least two of his shows.

SCREENSHOT

Despite the invitation being lifted from my blog and the comments to Bachmann, I managed to put my hurt feelings behind me and support Beck during a summer boycott of his advertisers by the Van Jones affiliated Color of Change.

Finally, McCray portrays himself and his ACORN 8 allies as friends of the conservative movement.

"MonCrief is featured favorably in the OGR committee report along with Karen Inman, Michael McCray, the ACORN 8 and Marcel Reid who also attended the conservative convention."

Marcel Reid is about as conservative as Max Blumenthal, who also showed up for his own purposes at CPAC 2010.

The ACORN 8 use conservatives for their own purposes and those conservatives either do not know the reality of the ACORN 8 or accept the ACORN 8 as an enemy of their enemy.

McCray goes on to state:

"We have never professed to be anti-ACORN or anti-Obama. Although many other conservative activists want us to be; which brings us back to Anita MonCrief."

"While others have waged a war of rhetoric and words against ACORN and President Obama we have focused on criminality within the association.... We have not criticized others for their activism and collaborate with those whom we share common interests; and we respectfully disengage from those who do not share our goals or approach."

@@@Add something like "That doesn't sound conservative to me."

@@@How about closing with something like: "I'm not perfect, as I've explained repeatedly [insert link to

Click here: Anita MonCrief: How This Ex-Liberal Found Fortitude and Her Way Home], but the ACORN 8's problem with me is that I do tell the truth and I rejected them last year [insert link to

Friday, October 30, 2009

How I Overcame Fear and Rejected the ACORN 8 Alternative ].

 

Reconciliation "Has Been Hijacked"

Reconciliation is perhaps the biggest misnomer in political parlance. A quick dictionary search finds:

rec·on·cile, verb, REH-kuhn-si(-uh)l, to win over to friendliness; cause to become amicable: to reconcile hostile persons

But the Senate process of reconciliation is known for making more enemies than friends. There is no better illustration of this simple truth than the Democrats threat to use the procedure to bypass the Republican filibuster.

But before we dig into the ongoing partisan spin battle, a little history on the process. Reconciliation was created in the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 to enhance Congress’ ability to change current law to bring revenue and spending in line with the projected budget. In the early years it was used to limit debate and amendments which could water down the ability of Congress to get their fiscal house in order.

As a Senator Obama echoed this traditional view saying,

“Under the rules, the reconciliation process does not permit that debate. Reconciliation is therefore the wrong place for policy changes . . . In short, the reconciliation process appears to have lost its proper meaning. A vehicle designed for deficit reduction and fiscal responsibility has been hijacked.” (Sen. Obama, Congressional Record, S .14150, 12/20/05)

However, where ideal and political reality meet, the picture becomes less clear. As NPR pointed out the budget reconciliation process is no stranger to health care reform. For instance, the budget reconciliation process was used to expand the Medicaid program to children of low-income families. It has also been used to incrementally make changes to Medicare, such as adding a hospice benefit and benefits including preventative care.

No one disputes that reconciliation has been used to make changes to health care. But it also cannot be disputed that the current comprehensive reform bill is dramatically different than past incremental reforms spread out over many years. The underlying purpose of all of health care precedent now being touted by Democrats was directly related to dealing with the budget. The inclusions of health care related portions of the bill were done piecemeal and in the words of Orrin Hatch “served as the glue” to passing balanced budgets. Even Democrat Chair of the Senate Budget Committee Kent Conrad told CBS’ Face the Nation:

“Reconciliation cannot be used to pass comprehensive health care reform. It won’t work because it was never designed for that kind of significant legislation.”

Moreover, Democrat Robert Byrd, the longest serving member of the Senate said

“I was one of the authors of the legislation that created the budget reconciliation process in 1974, and I am certain that putting health care reform . . . legislation on a freight train through Congress is an outrage that must be resisted.”

What strikes me though is the disappointing flip-flopping in Democrat rhetoric. In the filibuster debate Democrats characterize increasing Republican use as an unprecedented abuse of the procedure. In other words, we’ve done this in the past, so we can’t completely blame you for using it, but, we can at least blame you for using it more than we did. However, they deflect the same critique when it comes to using reconciliation. Republicans have used this parliamentary procedure before, Democrats are taking its use to a new level, and now Democrats are bristling at the notion their use is subject to criticism. We must stop the having-it-both-ways approach by both parties. The rules of the game should be static, not malleable. Their interpretation should remain the same whether you are in the majority or the minority.

With Obama set to call on Congress to pass in a speech today, this utopia will have to be delayed for when Republicans take back the House. If Democrats are determined to press forward with reconciliation, against the will of the people, that Republican majority could arrive as soon as this year. Here’s to hoping Republicans become the principled leaders Democrats are currently failing to be.

Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee

Read more at www.collegerepublicans.org

Putting Conservation Back Into Conservatism

[Blogger's Note: I began this sometime last fall before COP15, but lost track before the holidays; despite my time management ineptitude, these topics are still as timely as ever.]

James Murdoch, son and heir-apparent to conservative media magnate Rupert Murdoch, argued near the end of 2009 in the Washington Post that conservatives and conservationists make natural allies...or at least they ought to. It's a refreshing read, too, because with both major parties playing Alinsky politics it's easy to forget that, aside from the sum of our available natural resources, our future economic growth and cultural-historical legacy are on the line. In the interest of full disclosure, I have been a fisherman since I could hold a rod and reel, I'm a habitual recycler-reuser-reducer, I really appreciate having had the good fortune to visit some really cool places during my short time thus far on the planet, and I firmly believe that there's an economic opportunity here - involving the free market - that we don't (or shouldn't) want to miss.

Follow me: author David Pink argued in one of his books that right-brained people will rule the world one day. Certainly we can't get along without the analytical types, but it's the creative ones - the technological innovators - that have ushered man through various epochs across time and which policy makers seem to agree are the backbone of the American economy (this, by the way is true; small firms' marginal costs of production are lower than those of larger firms). Pink's argument goes something like this (and I'm paraphrasing here, not directly quoting):

Raise your hand if you own an iPod.

Lots of you? Good. Keep your hands up.

Now, keep your hands up if you knew you wanted one before they ever had been invented.

No more hands? I didn't think so.

How could you possibly know you'd want a thing before it came to be? It's the people thinking about what you want before you know you want it who really transform society - these are the people that reshape and redefine paradigms in a society.

This argument extends to green products, technology, and sustainable services. Glenn Beck may have assassinated Teddy Roosevelt's character on live television at CPAC this year, but like my good friend J.R. Lind (@jrlind on Twitter) at Nashville Post Business once reminded me, sustainability is good business. Something tells me ol' Teddy would be awfully proud of today's Republican Party if they could find a way to get on board with sustainability-as-economic-policy ethos. It's just going to require re-framing the debate to some degree.

Personally, I liked the way President Obama put it in his State of the Union address:

 

I don’t like the way the President and progressive Democrats are going about shaping and “solving” the problem…but I liked the way the President put it: whether or not the science is settled is not the chief issue here – there’s an economic opportunity to be had, and in the wake of an unemployment around 10%, it’s time for the Congress to act. We on the Right agree that bad science should not inform policy, but it’s equally important to remember that policy activists and elected officials are NOT scientific experts (unless by coincidence), and to paraphrase Dr. Richard A. Muller, PhD (Physics) the falsification of one area of data does not discredit an entire theory en masse. The Right is terrified that going green will mean capitulation to a radical socialist agenda [sic]; the most devout opponents of anthropogenic warming theory will reject any and all green movements. Of course, new regulatory schemes should be opposed, but it’s possible to look at conservation through our own lens.

Republicans won a major concession in the State of the Union, when President Obama included nuclear energy in his energy strategy. Nuclear power plants will help provide safe, renewable energy, and will create some jobs. Wind and solar will take a similar nibble out of the jobless numbers – but wind turbines are expensive and inefficient, and solar panels will get more expensive before they get cheaper.

The Right needs to go further. Falling back on small government and low tax rhetoric, too, simply won’t fill the bill – the average American doesn’t take our high polemic seriously anymore (beyond sharing our disdain for the sitting Democratic government – we should recognize that this could only be temporary). Republicans have plenty of momentum in their favor, and, like Rep. Paul Ryan, can seize this opportunity before sliding backward into campaign mode this year. Here’s the good news: it’s entirely possible to be green and pro-business all at once.

The government contracting apparatus provides the perfect setting for a pilot program to see the benefits of sustainability, with minimal impacts to the private sector. Last fall, President Obama signed an executive order establishing sustainability goals for greening up facilities and processes across the federal government, including prime and subcontractor goods, facilities, and practices. Contracting and procurement reform in this area – since it has to take place anyway in order for businesses to comply with as-yet undetermined standards and definitions – is our chance to establish a tiered, incentive-based approach to green business. Rather than allowing the federal government to bludgeon businesses everywhere by standing up new regulatory apparatuses with cap-and-trade schemes, the Right should prop up a reformed procurement system which gives preference in the awards process to contractors who meet certain tiered sustainability goals.

This is also a nice way for traditionally pro-Big Business Republicans to throw a nice-sized bone to small businesses, since the marginal costs of pollution abatement are lower for small firms than they are for large firms; the costs of risk-taking in green innovation are also smaller. The conclusion of this policy approach is a set of sustainability practices in the contracting environment (no pun intended) which can be voluntarily extended into commercial markets by companies who see real long-term benefits from sustainability in procurement space – just like John Q. Public who never knew how awesome the iPod would be before it was invented. Small businesses thrive, costs are lowered, small and large businesses collaborate, and the government is largely kept out of interfering with commercial markets – we merely reform a legacy process for the purpose of achieving a policy objective that has several fringe benefits. There are long-term political benefits to this strategy as well, as there is clearly a well-expressed demand for green products and investments/practices.

We – and certainly I – are a long way off from having an exhaustive, comprehensive approach for going green, framed within the context of our own ideological narratives. But it’s not altogether impossible with a little bit of creative thinking. We don’t have to agree on the science of global warming, but we should probably start from the same basic assumption that sustainability is good for business. Finally, we need to remember that we have a real chance to wrestle this issue away from the Left, but we have to act quickly and intelligently, and remember that committing to this policy arena is not capitulation if we come to the table with our own detailed approaches. Here’s hoping we have a champion on to take the reins and lead the Right into a new era.

Cross-posted at IntelligencePlease.com

Winning a New Generation of Young Conservatives

A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned – this is the sum of good government. – Thomas Jefferson

The political paths of young adults are often guided by the environment they were raised in. The “Roaring Twenties,” with Presidents Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover, created a conservative voting bloc that remained staunchly Republican. Franklin Roosevelt’s charisma and plan during the Great Depression created a group of lifelong Democrats. The Reagan Revolution built a nationalistic excitement based in unprecedented prosperity…and produced a new batch of Republicans along with it. The Bush years (the only president on the list whose era lacked a catchy nickname) left many young adults disenchanted with the perceived tone deafness of the executive branch and threatened to lose a generation of potential Republicans.

It is clear that the economic environment and the president’s response have a direct effect on the political ties of an entire generation. Obama should consider himself warned. A new Rasmussen poll shows that a vast majority of young adults aged 18-29 believe the nation is headed in the wrong direction. By a 68% to 23% margin young adults believe the United States is on the wrong track rather than the right direction – the highest margin of any age group polled.

During the campaign Barack Obama appeared as if he was going to capture the hearts of a generation. Hope and change resonated with young adults who were completely fed up a Washington removed from their cares and concerns. But President Obama is not the same as Campaign Obama and Republicans stand ready to reap the rewards.

Democrats failed to understand that they were elected to change Washington. Well young adults have now given up on changing government and simply want to minimize its role in their lives. A straw poll , taken at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference with 56% of respondents being 25 years of age or younger, confirmed this desire. When asked for the top two issues that matter to you personally reducing the size of the federal government and reducing government spending were far and away the top two choices.

Somewhat surprisingly young conservatives are willing to overlook things that will benefit them immediately – stimulating the economy and lowering taxes – because of a greater understanding of the long term threats of the deficit. President Obama, by focusing on big government initiatives such as health care and big ticket items like the stimulus, is losing the support of young adults.

Millennials have very few examples of government success in our lifetimes. Medicare is heading in to the red. We don’t believe we’re going to see a dime of Social Security benefits. The list goes on. Medicaid, the Post Office, the response to Katrina – simply put, we have been presented with little evidence that the government is equipped to handle our problems. The natural reaction to a federal government headed in the wrong direction? Make it smaller and have it spend less.

Listen up Republicans. Our generation is not lost to the pretty sounding words of a charismatic president. In fact, if new polls are any indication, we’re trending conservative. And we represent the next generation of the Republican party, the foundation of the conservative movement going forward.  The boots on the ground today, and the votes in the ballot box tomorrow. But you must understand what President Obama clearly doesn’t – we’re not willing to mortgage our future for a slight benefit today, we don’t believe the government is the answer to our problems, and we are legitimately scared by the ballooning debt. Do this right and Milllennials will become your biggest ally.\

- Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee.

Read more: www.collegerepublicans.org

 

Narrowing the Millennial Gap

Young Conservatives need a better publicist, or should I say a better blogger? For far too long the political parties have taken us for granted. Most assume we won’t vote, and even if we did, we’re sure to be Democrats. Republicans seemed content to win older demographics and hope that we would see the red-tinged light as we aged.

After years of being the red-headed step child of politics 2008 was our coming out party. Unfortunately, Republicans had very little to celebrate. The first to truly capture the importance of Twitter, Facebook, and iPhones, the Obama campaign created an excitement amongst Millennials. Again, the Republican Party seemed willing to play the waiting game, confident they would win young adults’ hearts and minds as they grew older.

After a weekend at the Conservative Political Action Conference it was clear Republicans have seen the light on the importance of young adults. As one regular CPAC attendee said,

“I’ve been coming to these for years. This used to be a convention of blue hairs; now it has youthful energy.”

But CPAC is merely the latest symptom of a viral growth in youth support for the conservative movement. Just two years ago, at the height of Obama’s popularity, the Democratic advantage in party affiliation among young voters reached 62% to 30%. This 32% margin was reflective of Obama margin of victory in the 2008 presidential election in which he defeated John McCain amongst young adults by a whopping 68% to 30% margin.

But the tides are turning. A recent Pew Research study found that,

“The “Millennial Generation” of young voters played a big role in the resurgence of the Democratic Party in the 2006 and 2008 elections, but their attachment to the Democratic Party weakened markedly over the course of 2009.”

Beyond the short term benefit of picking up votes in the crucial 2010 midterm elections, the shift represents the ability for Republicans to grow the next generation of conservatives. Contrary to the “wait till their older” approach, studies show that a person’s party identification, once formed, remains remarkably stable. As the influential study “The American Voter” found,

“Persons who identify with one of the parties typically have held the same partisan tie for all or most of their adults lives.”

This surprising truth bears out in the course of history. For instance as political scientist Norman Orstein writes,

“All the research done on the dramatic Democratic realignment of the 1930s shows that the key was young voters, coming of age as the Depression hit, influenced deeply by the contrast between Hoover and Roosevelt . . . those voters became lifelong Democrats.”

A similar trend happened in the 1980s when Ronald Reagan captured the hearts of young adults with a patriotic excitement that extolled American exceptionalism. Those same voters played an enormous part in the Republican Revolution of 1994 and remain the Republican party’s strongest age cohort.

The stability of young voter’s ideology combined with Obama’s landslide victory should have spelled long term trouble for the Republican brand. But we’ve bounced back. As the Pew Research study shows,

29 percent of Millennials describe themselves as liberals, 28 percent say they are conservatives and 40 percent identify themselves as moderates.

This snapshot ignores the momentum that is definitely on the side of conservatives. By focusing on issues that resonate with younger adults – small government and lower spending – Republicans have a chance to create a base of support for years to come. The enthusiasm is there. Spending a day walking the halls of CPAC would tell you that. More importantly, walking the halls of a college campus would tell you that. College Republicans have seen an enormous uptick and support. As a College Republican leader told me this past week, “Barack Obama has been the best thing for recruitment we’ve seen.” Beyond being a divisive figure, Obama has engaged young people in a way other presidents haven’t. But political engagement is only half the equation and College Republicans have cultivated that newfound interest into conservative momentum. We are not only the voice of young conservatives…we are future of the party.

- Brandon Greife, Political Director of the College Republican National Committee

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