Last Thursday, USA Today bizarrely found a silver lining to the recession: more people walking into welfare offices means more Democrat votes in November.
You see, Americans living in poverty are more likely to support Democrats yet less likely to vote. But never fear - ACORN came along to save the day. The liberal group won a major lawsuit in the battleground state of Ohio just in time for 2010 to assure that more welfare recipients register to vote.
Of course, USA Today didn't actually admit that it was ACORN and didn't explain the particulars of the lawsuit, but no matter. We have Democrats to save here.
Prepare yourself for hard-hitting journalism at its finest:
The recession that impoverished millions of Americans is producing a side effect: new voters.
Lawsuits by voting rights groups in Missouri and Ohio have led hundreds of thousands of people to file voter registration applications at welfare agencies, as mandated by the 1993 National Voter Registration Act, or the "motor voter" law. Cases pending in Indiana, New Mexico and other states, as well as new Justice Department guidelines, probably will boost those figures.
Isn't this peachy? Maybe if we get every unregistered voter on welfare they can all sign up.
Since writer Richard Wolf apparently didn't have time to explain the lawsuit, allow this NBer to do it for him. The National Voter Registration Act imposed a federal mandate that states provide citizens with opportunity to register in any building that offers public assistance. Several states challenged the authority of federal mandates that contradicted local laws. In Ohio, public servants were generally encouraged to offer registration, but officials insisted that state law made it impossible to enforce.
Never mind that registration was never actually off limits to low income voters. Anyone looking to register could have done so with a simple trip to the right office. Yet ACORN believes that tax dollars should be spent making sure welfare providers aggressively offer registration specifically to a voting bloc known for helping Democrats.
To achieve this, ACORN adopted the strategy of victory through perseverance: keep the lawsuit going forever, appeal as much as it takes, and wait for a judge who sees things their way. In November 2009, a three-year battle ended when Ohio gave up and forged a settlement.
As USA Today gleefully noted, these new voters come just in time for endangered Democrats:
An increase could help President Obama and his party. A USA TODAY/Gallup Poll in June showed 55% of Americans with incomes less than $20,000 like Obama's performance, tied for his best showing among income groups.
Those numbers could influence elections. Nearly 90% of registered voters cast ballots in 2008, according to the Census Bureau. Republican John McCain won Missouri by 4,000 votes in 2008.
Catch that? If only Missouri had an extra 4,000 welfare voters showing up in 2008, Democrats might have won that state. And it just so happens that right now Missouri Democrat Robin Carnahan is slightly trailing Republican Roy Blunt for a Senate seat this November.
Good thing "voter rights groups" are there to make sure that more reliable Democrat votes are on the way.
Wolf did finally get around to mentioning ACORN, at the very end and only as part of a quote from a critic:
Jason Torchinsky, a former Justice Department lawyer in the Bush administration, says liberal groups want welfare offices to replace the work of ACORN, a coalition of anti-poverty groups that disbanded this year after allegations of voter fraud.
"With the demise of ACORN, the left needs somebody to pick up that function," he says.
See the sleight of hand? Wolf didn't admit that ACORN was behind the lawsuit or that ACORN front groups like Project Vote continue their work uninhibited. One passing quote from a Bush administration official was apparently enough to deem this article fair.
Did Wolf quote anyone who thought such policies were a waste of tax funding, or that states had no business turning welfare offices into voting stations? No. Thanks to ACORN front groups that hounded the state of Ohio for three years, social workers must now be paid to register poor voters that are openly expected to vote Democratic.
And in the mind of a USA Today reporter, this is apparently a great idea.