ACORN has been contacted by the FBI and the Brooklyn district attorney’s office in connection to the recent scandal in which staffers were caught on video advising two people posing as a pimp and a prostitute on how to break the law.
The news was revealed by Arthur Schwartz, ACORN’s general counsel, on a conference call with reporters moments ago. (Full disclosure: Almost a decade ago, I was hired by Schwartz to work on a political campaign.) Schwartz said that the requests for information were not subpoenas, but confirmed that they were part of investigations into possible criminal activity revealed by the videos. He added that ACORN is cooperating with those requests.
In the wake of the videos being released, several Republican lawmakers have called for a Justice Department probe of the group. And President Obama also said he thought ACORN should be investigated, though he didn’t specify by who.
In addition, ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis appeared to knock down a recent report (sub. req.) by the Wall Street Journal that ACORN is considering ending its voter registration work, which does not use federal funds. Lewis said that ACORN will continue to help low-income citizens participate in the political process.