Photoshop credit: Leo Alberti
I said last week that the ACORN funding cut-offs on the Hill were just the beginning.
Good news: The ball is rolling.
DOJ Inspector General Glenn Fine has launched an internal probe.
I covered Fine’s extensive work on immigration enforcement lapses during the Clinton and Bush years. He is meticulous, thorough, and fair. Fine’s bio is here.
In addition, Republicans have called on IGs throughout the government to investigate:
WASHINGTON. D.C. – Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs Susan Collins (R-Maine) and House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Ranking Member Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) have sent letters to the Inspectors General (IG) for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Small Business Administration (SBA), the Federal Election Commission (FEC), the Department of the Treasury, the Elections Assistance Commission, the Department of Labor and the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) calling on them to “review grants, contracts, entitlements and other forms of assistance to ACORN and its affiliates.”
“As long as taxpayers are subsidizing ACORN and its affiliates, we need to use every measure possible to ensure that those dollars are being spent and managed appropriately,” Issa said. “The way in which ACORN
and its affiliates have structured their organization raises significant questions regarding their intent and use of federal dollars. Clearly just taking them at their word is not sufficient enough oversight.”
“At a time when hard-working American families are making tough financial sacrifices, I am appalled by recent reports involving the apparent rampant misuse of taxpayer dollars by ACORN, a community
organization umbrella group,” Sen. Collins said. “During the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, congressional oversight into how the public’s money is spent has never been more important. That is why I am joining Rep. Issa in this urgent request that Inspectors General launch an official investigation. We are asking investigators to examine federal grants, contracts and assistance
awarded to ACORN and its affiliates, to review whether ACORN and its affiliates have complied with our tax laws, and to determine whether an appropriate level of federal oversight was in place to begin with.”
Collins and Issa also ask that the IG’s to “determine whether appropriate oversight mechanisms” are in place to ensure funds distributed to ACORN and its affiliates were spent in a manner consistent with the criteria for which they applied for funding. If the reviews uncover any evidence that ACORN and its affiliates misused funds, Issa and Collins have asked the IG’s to “refer such evidence to the Commission’s Suspension and Debarment Officials for a determination of whether or not ACORN and its affiliates need to be placed on the federal government’s Excluded Parties List.”
Keep these IGs in your prayers. Watchdogs are an endangered species in the Age of Obama.
I’ll repeat the three must-investigate items I posted this weekend:
Now that the White House supports an investigation, Congress should make sure to investigate:
2) How Team Obama shared donor lists with the president’s old employer, ACORN affiliate Project Vote, a 501(c)(3) organization, which is prohibited from engaging in political activity (Mr. President, meet Anita MonCrief);
3) And how Project Vote and hundreds of myriad entities intermingled non-profit, tax-exempt funding with the national ACORN flagship’s political operations — a buried story Obama would know about if he read NYTimes reporter Stephanie Strom’s report last October before she was muzzled as Election Day drew near.
Bring it on.
Fun fact: The ACORN sycophants in Maryland state government are jumping on the bandwagon…O’Malley says MD Attorney General to investigate ACORN .