Op-ed Pieces

"Economic Stimulus" Designed to Aid Anti-gun Radicals

The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), the far left anti-gun group under investigation for voter fraud, could be eligible to receive millions, if not billions, of dollars from the economic bailout bill that passed out of the House of Representatives on Wednesday. 

ACORN was an aggressive supporter of Barack Obama -- who had served as the group's legal counsel and even trained ACORN in "community organizing" -- in the presidential election.  The Obama campaign even paid the group $800,000 for "voter turnout," the very activities that came under scrutiny by the FBI.

In October 2008, ACORN's Las Vegas office was raided by law enforcement agents investigating voter registration fraud.  According to the Nevada Secretary of State's office, voter information submitted by the group included nonexistent names, false addresses, duplicate filings and even the starting lineup of the Dallas Cowboys.

In addition to turning in massive amounts of fraudulent voter registration forms leading up to the 2008 elections, ACORN is also involved in anti-Second Amendment activism.  For instance, a New Jersey ACORN chapter supported a one-gun-a-month ordinance in Jersey City, a law that was struck down last year by an appeals court for violating the State's preemption law. 

This group should not be eligible to receive one penny of your tax money, yet ACORN has received over $28 million in taxpayer dollars in 2008 alone and over $53 million since 1994.  Last year, some members of Congress were able to strip $100 million of potential ACORN money from the home mortgage industry bailout bill, but it was reinserted into the current legislation.

The total amount of money for which groups like ACORN would be eligible in the bill is a staggering $4.2 billion, under a provision for "neighborhood stabilization activities."  According to the bill, the money can be utilized by state and local governments and also "nonprofit entities or consortia of nonprofit entities." 

ACORN can possibly collect more money under this legislation that it has over the past 15 years, and you can bet that ACORN is expert at accessing those funds. 

Another group that could benefit from the bailout bill is MoveOn.org, an organization that has advocated for sweeping gun control laws.

According to Rep. Darrell Issa, a California Republican, "MoveOn.org's civic action committee could receive stimulus funds such as money earmarked for energy 'activities', since MoveOn.org lists one of its goals to 'reduce America's dependence on oil.'"

Both ACORN and MoveOn.org have also been heavily involved in supporting Secretary of State candidates, thus placing allies in a position where they can help swing close elections in their favor.

This strategy has apparently paid off handsomely in Minnesota, where ACORN supporter and former community organizer Mark Ritchie ran the election recount that saw pro-gun incumbent Senator Norm Coleman's slight lead on election night evaporate into a win for supposed funnyman Al Franken.  Over 25 voting precincts recorded more votes than there are registered voters, votes that "happened" to be overwhelmingly in favor of Franken.
Mark Ritchie was supported in 2006 by the Secretary of State Project, a so-called "527" organization co-founded by MoveOn.org's director of grassroots mobilization.

The defeat of Sen. Coleman, if it holds up in court, will mean one less Senator to vote against bills like the semi-auto ban.

Pro-gun Senator David Vitter (R-LA) sees the bill as "payoff" for the liberal interest groups that helped to put Barack Obama in the White House, and that some provisions in the bill were actually written with specific interest groups in view.   

Sen. Vitter told FOX News that the bill "is a payoff for that political activity in last year's election, particularly with the fraudulent voter registration drives," Sen. Vitter said.

The bottom line is that the only thing this bill will "stimulate" is attacks against the Second Amendment.

Gun Owners of America is calling on the Senate to strip the provisions which can fund anti-gun organizations, or to reject the bill in its entirety.


John Velleco is the Director of Federal Affairs for Gun Owners of America.