When the U.S. Congress wrote into legislation to strip ACORN of its funding, and President Barack Obama signed the legislation* — because the self-serving, disloyal, uber-slippery Obama has a history of throwing his former supporters under the bus whenever they come under fire from the wingnuts — I knew that something wasn’t right. You don’t just single out a single entity like that for political expediency.
I’m no lawyer, but apparently I was right.
New York – The U.S. government’s move this fall to cut off funding to ACORN was unconstitutional, a federal judge ruled Friday, handing the embattled group a legal victory.
U.S. District Judge Nina Gershon issued the preliminary injunction against the government, saying it’s in the public’s interest for the organization to continue receiving federal funding.
ACORN claimed in its lawsuit that Congress’ decision to cut off its funding was unconstitutional because it punitively targeted an individual organization.
Gershon said in her ruling that ACORN had 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 even administrative, process adjudicating guilt.”
Bill Quigley, the legal director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, which brought the lawsuit on behalf of ACORN and two affiliates, said the decision sends a sharp message to Congress that it can’t single out an individual or organization without due process.
“It’s a resounding victory for ACORN,” he said. “I’d be surprised if the government decides to appeal.”
ACORN, or the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, describes itself as an advocate for low-income and minority homebuyers and residents in communities served by its offices around the country….
The law that halted ACORN’s federal funding took effect Oct. 1 and was extended Oct. 31. It was set to either expire or be extended again on Dec. 18.
ACORN’s lawsuit was filed in federal court in Brooklyn and sought reinstatement of the funds. Quigley said millions of dollars in funds should begin to flow again to ACORN next week. The judge said the “public will not suffer harm by allowing the plaintiffs to continue work on contracts duly awarded by federal agencies.” …
I have had concerns with ACORN myself, as I have written. But that a person or entity is entitled to due fucking process before being punished and that there shall be no bill of attainder — these are basic fucking U.S. constitutional principles.
I’m no fan of Ron Paul, who is a homophobic wingnut posing as a centrist or moderate, but according to a website supporting him, more than a third of the members of the U.S. House of Representatives are lawyers, and more than half of the members of the U.S. Senate are lawyers. According to Wikipedia, Barack Obama “taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004.”
How can so many supposedly educated lawyers get it so fucking wrong on such basic fucking constitutional principles? Are they that fucking incompetent or do they just not give a flying fuck? Or both? Yes, I include our illustrious Nobel-Peace-Prize-winning new “war” president in that non-rhetorical question.
It’s funny, because there is the supposition that the highest elected officials of our land know what the fuck they’re doing.
But they don’t. And/or they just don’t fucking care.
And that’s fucking scary for our national security. It threatens our freedom and our well-being that the political scandal or political flavor du jour can override what are supposed to be the bedrock principles of the U.S. Constitution.
And it makes you wonder what else our “leaders” in Washington get wrong, in what other ways they routinely rape the U.S. Constitution**, which apparently is just an ancient document on display in D.C.
In 2009, in light of various scandals, a number of Democrats who once advertised their connections to ACORN began to distance themselves, as Republicans began to use ACORN to portray Democrats as corrupt. In light of the controversies, the United States House and Senate, by wide margins, attached amendments to pending spending legislation that would temporarily prohibit the federal government from funding ACORN, or any agency that had been involved in similar scandals — including money authorized by previous legislation. President Obama signed the bill into law on October 1.
ACORN sued the United States Government in the United States District Court in Brooklyn over the measure, known as the “Defund ACORN Act,” claiming it was a bill of attainder, and therefore unconstitutional….
**Such as by denying non-heterosexuals equal human and civil rights, and even allowing such equal human and civil rights for a specific historically oppressed minority group to be put up for a vote.