THE BLOG
12/04/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

FOX Goes Nuts Over ACORN

FOX News never met a community organizer they didn't hate.  Desperate to exacerbate the GOP's recent attacks on ACORN, FOX is fueling the fire of misinformation about the nation's largest grassroots community organizing group.  They attacked ACORN's Chief Organizer Bertha Lewis last Thursday for endorsing Barack Obama in a video, claiming ACORN should not be allowed to make public endorsements since they are partly government funded.  Once again, however, FOX is dead wrong.

According to Dan Cantor, executive director of the Working Families Party in New York that created Lewis's video, "ACORN is not a c3 non-profit. Quite the opposite -- it has long fought to engage low-income Americans in politics, and its political action committee has long endorsed candidates for president on down to dog catcher in the attempt to hold politicians accountable to working people."  

Working Families has fought successfully for a minimum wage hike, paid family leave, and to extend healthcare coverage, among other recent campaigns.  And as Cantor points out, voting the Working Family line for Obama (which ultimately is added to the total number of Democratic votes under a New York provision that allows two parties to endorse the same candidate) conveys a message for real progressive change. 

Lewis is the co-chair of the Working Families Party, just as ACORN has many members who belong to other organizations fully capable of making public endorsements. ACORN also has numerous political action committees at the state level working directly on various electoral races.  Not to mention ACORN Votes, a federal PAC that endorsed Obama back in February.  

Nathan Henderson-James, an ACORN spokesman who explained all the ways in which FOX bungled this story, told me, "We understand that these kinds of nuances are such that even the amazing brains over at FOX have trouble grasping them, but FOX continues to get practically everything about ACORN wrong."

FOX is so infatuated with waging the Republican party's war on ACORN that they won't let a little thing like the truth get in the way.  If you think "infatuated" is perhaps too strong a word, Media Matters reports that FOX mentioned "ACORN" 1,500 times in October alone -- 1,300 more times than CNN.  And yet FOX's stories are about as accurate -- and almost as laughable -- as The Daily Show's send up of all the recent ACORN bashing.  

What this boils down to though is that Republicans (and by extension, FOX News) are facing an overwhelming defeat in this election.  Rather than throwing in the towel, however, they are giving in to their racial anxieties by going after the organization that registered hundreds of thousands of people from low-income minority districts who would otherwise have gone disenfranchised.  But nothing, not usurping the Justice Department, not attack ads from GOP hatchet man Richard Berman, and certainly not wildly inaccurate reports from FOX, will deprive progressives of this victory.