ACORN Plans To File for Bankruptcy

The community organizing group lost funding amid scandals and right-wing pressure

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The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), the community organizing group that pressed banks to offer home loans to low-income Americans and helped several hundred thousand people to vote, is on the ropes.

The community organizing group Acorn, battered politically from the right and suffering from mismanagement along with a severe loss of government and other funds, is on the verge of filing for bankruptcy, officials of the group said Friday.

Acorn is holding a teleconference this weekend to discuss plans for a bankruptcy filing, two officials of the group said. They asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to speak to the news media.

Over the last six months, at least 15 of the group’s 30 state chapters have disbanded and have no plans of re-forming, Acorn officials said. The California and New York chapters, two of the largest, have severed their ties to the national group and have independently reconstituted themselves with new names. Several other state groups are also re-forming outside the Acorn umbrella, and will not be affected if the national organization files for bankruptcy.

SOURCE: New York Times

The group was badly burned when two conservative activists pretending to be a pimp and prostitute secretly taped themselves receiving tax-evasion tips from two workers at ACORN's Baltimore office. One of those activists, James O'Keefe, is currently facing charges that he also broke into Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu's office to tamper with the telephones.

There's no doubt that ACORN needs to tighten up its operation. But trying to get more people to vote and in homes of their own are worthy causes that too few groups are taking up effectively. Hopefully those chapters of the group that weren't directly involved in recent scandals can survive and continue those missions.