Saturday, December 12, 2009

Acorn Law Ruled Unconstitutional

Some more good news!

A US District Court judge has granted a preliminary injunction against last September's defunding of anti-poverty group ACORN by a vote of Congress.

NoWhining ACORN had filed a lawsuit claiming that Congress's action violated the explicit Constitutional prohibition against bills of attainder -- punishments handed out to an isolated individual or group by legislative proceedings rather than through the courts.

The judge agreed that "the plaintiffs have raised a fundamental issue of separation of powers. They have been singled out by Congress for punishment that directly and immediately affects their ability to continue to obtain federal funding, in the absence of any judicial, or administrative, process adjudicating guilt."

Representatives of ACORN and of the Center for Constitutional Rights, which brought the suit on their behalf, were jubilant following the ruling. CCR Vice President Jules Lobel was quoted in a CCR press release as saying, "This historic decision by the Court affirms the fundamental constitutional principle that the Congress cannot be judge, jury, and executioner."

ACORN Executive Director Bertha Lewis proclaimed that "the court's decision is a victory not only for the many dedicated citizens who work with ACORN to improve their communities and promote responsible lending and homeownership, but for the Constitution and the rights of all Americans."

Immediately following the release last September of amateur videos showing ACORN employees seemingly offering advice on how to set up an illegal prostitution ring, there was a rush to judgment on the part of both Congress and the media. There have been suggestions all along, however, that ACORN was guilty of nothing more than sloppy record-keeping and lax oversight, and leftwing website have recently begun to cast doubt on whether the heavily-edited videos themselves can stand up to scrutiny.

A Justice Department opinion issued a few weeks ago, suggesting that the Congressional vote could not legally be used to cut off federal payments to ACORN for services that had already been performed, was condemned by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) as "shameful." This new injunction is likely to call forth more of the same sort of Republican outrage...

Inserted from <Raw Story>

The Republicans have no right to whine over this.  Two months ago I said this law would not pass Constitutional muster, because it is a bill of attainder.

12 comments:

Gwendolyn H. Barry said...

This IS excellent news! :-)

TRUTH 101 said...

I did read that my friend, the ever vigilant douchebag Andrew Breitbart, doctored the videos of ACORN employees.

What this comes down to though is very simply, politics. The republicans want to fund religious groups that do social work because they generally support republicans.
Anything they can to to attack Democrats they will do.


God I wish patronage could be out in the open. I don't have a problem with it if it's above board. Unfortunately the republicans can't do anything without being sneaky.


Lies and subterfuge appeal to the republican base.

Oso said...

Great news.ACORN (and the SEIU)are easy to push around cause they don't have a lot of $ and lobbyists,plus they work almost exclusively with poor and minorities-two strikes right there.

I'm sure FOX will say this is socialism and shredding the constitution because it's part of their idiot mantra, but for now you can chalk up a victory for the good guys.

TomCat said...

Yes it is, Gwen.

Truth, GOP hatred of ACORN actually goes much deeper than just patronage. ACORN helps with the census and ventures into places where census workers dare not go to count the poor. Since designation of House seats is based on the census, and since poor people tend to vote Democratic, the more of them are counted, the less districts the GOP can win. ACORN also registers poor people to vote. This runs counter th GOP schemes to disenfranchise poor and minority voters.

Oso, how can you be so blind. Fox will say it's fascism. ;-)

Lisa G. said...

Grayson also called it a bill of attainder in his argument with a fellow Republican where he wouldn't yield his time. It was hilarious to watch - "No, I will not yield my time until Congressman blah blah answers my question". I love that guy - he is sharp as a tack, knows his shit and he's on our side. I laughed my ass off at him taking that douchebag apart. It finally came down to Grayson explaining to the idiot what a bill of attainder was and that it was specifically cited in the Constitution. The guy just sat there with his mouth open - HILARIOUS!

Lisa G. said...

Oh, and Darrell Issa cana bite me - I hope he loses his seat in the BIGGEST WAY POSSIBLE.

TomCat said...

Hilarious indeed, Lisa. In fact, I posted the video of that incident here. But I recommend you don't let Issa bite you. Rabies can be really nasty.

Stimpson said...

Lisa G beat me to it. I was gonna remind everyone of Grayson's total awesomeness on this matter. Gawd, I love that guy.

Oso said...

TomCat,I stand corrected.This is indeed fascism rather than socialism and I'm just happy that ClusterFox News is here to keep things straight.

I watched the Grayson thing a few minutes ago-I got him up there with Barbara Lee now!

Lisa G. said...

I'm not worried about rabies from Issa - at least that shit is curable. I'm more worried about Republican cooties, which apparently leave you permanently mentally impaired. I'm surprised these assholes don't drool on themselves all day!

Oso said...

Lisa G.
In case you're interested I did a rebuttal to Repub cootie-carriers still trying to blame Subprime on liberals over at MadMikes.

TomCat said...

Stimpson, I really dig him too.

LOL, OSO!! BTW, Congrats on being visitor number 20,000 here. I set your link in the thousands list to Mike's as you post there.

Lisa, you should be safe from the cooties if you stay off the Kool Aid