On Hannity & Colmes, Dick Morris falsely claimed that Sen. Barack Obama served as “general counsel” to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). In fact, while Obama was part of a team of attorneys that represented ACORN in a lawsuit against the State of Illinois, Obama was never “general counsel” to ACORN.
Fox News contributor Dick Morris falsely claimed on the October 13 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes that Sen. Barack Obama served as “general counsel” to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). In fact, Obama was never “general counsel” to ACORN. He was part of a team of attorneys from the law firm Miner, Barnhill & Galland that represented ACORN in a lawsuit against the State of Illinois.
As Media Matters for America has noted, the plaintiffs, which included, among others, the U.S. Department of Justice and the League of Women Voters, sued to force the state to implement the National Voter Law of 1993, the federal “motor voter” registration law. On June 5, 1995, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued a decision affirming the lower court's finding for the plaintiffs.
A civil docket for the lawsuit names attorneys Judson Hirsch Miner and Steve Bachmann, who was not a member of Miner, Barnhill & Galland (known as Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland when Obama was hired), as lead attorneys for the plaintiffs. Obama was an associate at the firm at that time and was not a lead attorney in the case.
From the October 13 broadcast of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes:
MORRIS: And by the way, if you don't want Ayers, look at those nutty people at ACORN -- pardon the pun. Obama gave them $800,000 from this campaign. And they're using the money to register people 20 times over to vote. And they've been raided in 11 states by the FBI.
COLMES: All right.
MORRIS: And this is not some long-term association. He was general counsel to ACORN and he gave them $800,000.
COLMES: He was the general counsel --
MORRIS: And they're an organization dedicated to voter fraud.
COLMES: -- on one case 12 years ago, and did two hours of training with them, that's basically it. But we will --
MORRIS: No. He was general counsel to ACORN in the State of Illinois.
COLMES: And there's no evidence --
MORRIS: And his current campaign, “Obama for President,” gave ACORN a contract for $800,000.
COLMES: Is there any evidence that Obama was involved in fraud?
MORRIS: Well, there's absolute evidence that the employees of the Obama campaign, ACORN, are involved in fraud and that they're using Obama's campaign money to do it.
COLMES: But they're not employees of the campaign. They work for ACORN and ACORN has strictures in place to make sure that it never gets as far as the voting booth. But we will --
MORRIS: They -- yeah, they just register them 16 times as a handwriting test.
COLMES: That's registration fraud, not voting fraud.
MORRIS: They're not actually planning to have them vote 16 times.
COLMES: All right, we are going to continue with Dick Morris.