Skip to comments.ACORN Is Baaack: Meet Their Candidate for New York City Mayor Who Leads in the Polls
Posted on 09/30/2013 7:08:47 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
Twenty years ago, the mayoral victory of Rudy Giuliani represented a repudiation of the dysfunctional left-wing machine that had previously run New York City. Taxpayers, parents in failing schools, residents of crime-ridden neighborhoods, and job creators have all benefited from the tough reforms Giuliani implemented and his successor Michael Bloomberg largely implemented in the years after that sea-change election.
But this November, the Left looks ready to storm back into New Yorks City Hall in the person of Bill de Blasio who, back in the days when he served as an aide to David Dinkins, Giulianis Democratic predecessor, proudly said he was an advocate of democratic socialism.
And that wasnt just a throwaway line. Throughout his entire career, de Blasio has shown an affinity for, and has been in alliance with, extreme left-wing groups. Take ACORN, the community-organizing group whose employees were convicted for voter-registration fraud during the 2008 presidential campaign. The group collapsed in 2009 after a series of undercover tapes showed its employees in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Brooklyn giving advice on how to hide prostitution activities and cheat the tax system. Earlier that year, de Blasio had won ACORNs endorsement for his bid to jump from his perch as a two-term city council member from Brooklyn to become the city-wide public advocate, a job he then used to run for mayor this year.
The New York Daily News has documented the close give-get relationship between ACORN and de Blasio. After ACORNs 2009 endorsement, de Blasio spent nearly $43,000 in campaign money to hire an ACORN affiliate, N.Y. Citizen Services, Inc., for field staff and canvassing. He also spent over $67,000 to hire the for-profit campaign-consulting arm of the far-left Working Families Party. WFP was founded in part by New York ACORN and shared office space and volunteers with it.
De Blasio also funneled taxpayer money to ACORN during his time as a New York City councilman. The Daily News reported that de Blasio sponsored or co-sponsored a total of $115,000 in taxpayer dollars for ACORN and an affiliate, ostensibly to counsel low-income people on tax returns and foreclosures.
Back in 2009, Dick Dadey of the nonpartisan watchdog Citizens Union argued that the association between ACORN and de Blasio doesnt look good. No kidding. It involved ACORN endorsing de Blasio, its affiliates then being hired by his campaign, and then, after the election, ACORN itself getting taxpayer funding sponsored by de Blasio.
After the devastating videos tarnishing ACORN surfaced, the U.S. Congress, the Census Bureau, and New Yorks Democratic governor David Paterson all ended cooperation with the group. But de Blasio sent a letter reaffirming his support for ACORN, merely calling for an audit of the taxpayer largesse the group had benefited from. The swift collapse of the group meant that a truly independent audit was never conducted, but a separate probe of the national ACORN office uncovered the embezzlement of nearly $1 million from the group by a brother of ACORNs president a fact that ACORN officials decided to conceal from their own board. ACORN was rotten to the core, and anyone with any sense should have seen its problems coming, Marcel Reid, an ACORN board member who was forced out after she asked too many questions, told me in 2009.
Well, it appears that the characters behind ACORN in New York have a new lease on political life with de Blasios primary victory for mayor. The New York Post reports that, according to a Democratic insider, ACORN had long sought to put de Blasio into the mayors office. Without exaggeration, ACORNs long-range plan since 2001 was to elect de Blasio mayor, the insider said. De Blasio was a big ACORN project.
A key ally of de Blasios is Bertha Lewis, who was CEO of national ACORN at the time of its collapse and a co-founder of the Working Families Party. On primary-election night earlier this month, she stood on stage next to de Blasio and told interviewers: Were baaaack. The right wing will have to deal with it.
De Blasio told the Post hes proud to stand with Lewis. Bertha Lewis is one of the citys most passionate and effective progressive leaders, and Im proud to have worked with her for years, he said.
When NROs Alec Torres asked Lewis how often she meets with de Blasio, she said the encounters have become much more frequent since his mayoral campaign got under way. We used to meet every month, along with other folks, to talk about issues and strategy, and the structure of the campaign, and outreach, and constituents, and get-out-the-vote, Lewis said. We met a lot of times during the primary.
Certainly Lewis and de Blasio are on the same page when it comes to the issues. De Blasio wants to place a moratorium on the nesting of non-union charter schools within existing public schools and has recommended making existing charters pay rent a potentially crippling blow to their continued existence. Lewiss other priorities more taxes on upper-income New Yorkers, a higher minimum wage, and a dramatic expansion of public housing are also shared by de Blasio.
New Yorks mayor isnt charged with official foreign-policy duties, but de Blasio clearly has a weakness for associating with foreign left-wing tyrants. In 2002, he joined the city councils most left-wing members in a City Hall ceremony honoring Robert Mugabe, the corrupt Marxist strongman who runs Zimbabwe. The New York Times has reported on his 1980s romance with the Marxist Sandinista government of Nicaragua, which included a ten-day trip to distribute food and medicine. To this day, he speaks glowingly of the really inspirational blend of youthful energy and idealism that the Sandinistas brought to the goal of trying to figure out what would [make their society] work better. The corruption-riddled Sandinistas were thrown out of office in 1990, which may explain why, when de Blasio married in 1994, he had to honeymoon in Castros Cuba to find the right ideological ambience. His decision of a honeymoon locale was not a light one he had to violate the U.S. ban on travel to Cuba.
As someone who remembers what New York was like under David Dinkins, I find it very unsettling to see a former Dinkins aide campaigning to carry on his legacy. Nothing good will come from handing New York back to a left-wing wrecking crew.
A de Blasio victory in November would also embolden the far Left nationally. The revelation that de Blasio was an active supporter of the Central American solidarity movement and also an outspoken opponent of nuclear power when he was in high school should hugely excite the progressive base in New York politics after a long period of Republican rule, said Tom Hayden, the radical co-founder of the 1960s group Students for a Democratic Society, in the Huffington Post. De Blasio did not leave his radical youth behind; today, he is a leading critic of stop-and-frisk and the massive economic inequalities dramatized by Occupy Wall Street.
New York may be on the verge of electing a truly radical mayor. There should be a great deal more debate about what Bill
May they get what they deserve.
Nothing good will come from handing New York back to a left-wing wrecking crew.
New York deserves what it votes for.
America’s first big city communist mayor!
The trajectory from tragedy to farce ought to be mercifully short given the thuggish ideology of this bargain bin Sandalista and his cronies.
Well, they're baaaaaaack...(soon)
If I owned an apartment in the Brooklyn, or anywhere else in the city. I would start to consider a move.
Bill de Blasio/ACORN'S Bertha Lewis at a "Get out the vote" event.
At left is DeBlasio's daughter Chiara. NYP Photo: Byron Smith
NY DAILY NEWS PHOTO.
A new generation in NYC will be Dinkinized, then maybe they will wake up again when the debacle gets bad enough.
It’ll be time to order extra body bags soon.
Yep. It’s been a nice 20 years and I think residents will be surprised by how quickly crime will return and the City will deteriorate.
What happened to Lloyd Braun?
What happened to Mark Green? Wasn’t he was so radical that Nanny Bloomberg ran to the right of him?
Anyway, the “gorgeous mosaic” of the Dinkins era will soon be back, complete with wildings & squeegee men, so enjoy, you oh-so-progressive-and-hip Manhattanites!