Remember when Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) supposedly disbanded in the wake of the James O’Keefe-Hannah Giles video investigation showing ACORN, a largely government-funded entity, helping people they thought to be pimps and prostitutes avoid tax penalties for engaging in sex trafficking?
This week, Cause of Action, a nonprofit focusing on government accountability released a full list of re-branded former ACORN entities, still-active ACORN entities, and ACORN allies. The list is a shocking 174 organizations long. It includes the federally funded Affordable Housing Centers of America (AHCOA) – the successor to ACORN – and the Mutual Housing Authority of New York (MHANY). MHANY is affiliated with the New York Communities for Change, a re-branded ACORN entity, which brags that the Obama Housing and Urban Development Department has approved it as a housing counselor. According to MHANY, it receives funds from the Federal Home Loan Bank, HUD, and Fannie Mae.
This was always the danger of ACORN: it was a far-flung, heavily-subsidized organization that was able to float between organizational names and constructs, constantly evading close scrutiny. Nothing has changed, apparently. Reconstitution of ACORN has been a long time in coming. In April 2010, House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform chairman Darrell Issa released a report stating that ACORN “is attempting to rebrand itself without instituting real reforms or removing senior leadership figures that need to be held accountable for wrongdoing. These newly renamed organizations are like career criminal who adopt aliases without changing their criminal lifestyles.” At the end of Righteous Indignation, Andrew Breitbart wrote, “It’s not over yet.”
It isn’t. And ACORN won’t go down without a fight.