ACORN's Man in the White House
By Matthew Vadum on 9.28.09 @ 6:09AM
Newly discovered evidence shows the radical advocacy group ACORN has a man in the Obama White House.
This power behind the throne is longtime ACORN operative Patrick Gaspard. He holds the title of White House political affairs director, the same title Karl Rove held in President Bush's White House.
Evidence shows that years before he joined the Obama administration, Gaspard was ACORN boss Bertha Lewis's political director in New York.
Lewis, the current "chief organizer" or CEO of ACORN, was head of New York ACORN from at least 1994 through 2008, when she took over as national leader of ACORN. With Gaspard at work in the White House, Lewis might as well be speaking to President Obama through an earpiece as he goes about his daily business ruining the country.
Erick Erickson of the website RedState recently did an excellent job explaining the relationship of Gaspard to Lewis and President Obama so I won't take up space here recalling all his valuable insights. Suffice it to say Erickson reported that Gaspard figures prominently in Lewis's rolodex, which Erickson has in his possession.
Skeptics among you may ask, How do we actually know the low-profile Gaspard, who prefers to work outside the public spotlight and who can hardly be found in Nexis searches at all, was Lewis's right hand man?
Because Gaspard's employment with the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now is acknowledged by no less an authority than ACORN founder Wade Rathke himself. Rathke writes at his blog:
Tell me that 1199's former political director, Patrick Gaspard (who was ACORN New York's political director before that) didn't reach out from the White House and help make that happen, and I'll tell you to take some remedial classes in "politics 101."
The "before that" time period Rathke is referring to is 2003 when Gaspard was executive vice president for political and legislative affairs for 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East. According to publicly available disclosure documents, Gaspard registered as a federal lobbyist for SEIU on Oct. 22, 2007. The registration and subsequent disclosures indicate he lobbied Congress on SCHIP, the State Children's Health Insurance Program.
Incidentally, the lines between ACORN and radical left-wing SEIU, whose acronym stands for Service Employees International Union, become fuzzy in places.
SEIU Locals 100 and 880 are part of the ACORN network of organizations. Local 100 in New Orleans is headed by Rathke. SEIU Local 880 in Chicago is headed by longtime ACORN insider Keith Kelleher.
You'd never know about the SEIU connection from visiting ACORN's website, www.acorn.org. That's because the website has been receiving a thorough scrubbing in recent months. On ACORN's affiliated organizations page, references to the two SEIU locals mysteriously disappeared.
It's worth noting that Gaspard's ties to ACORN, SEIU, and Lewis go way back.
According to the Complete Marquis Who's Who, Gaspard has a long history of political involvement stretching back to at least 1989 when he volunteered for the David Dinkins mayoral campaign in New York City. In 2003 he became acting field director for Howard Dean's presidential bid. He was national field director in 2004 for America Coming Together, a now-defunct get-out-the-vote operation that received a $775,000 fine for campaign finance abuses. In 2006 Gaspard was acting political director for SEIU International.
Gaspard also worked for New York's Working Families Party, which is an appendage of ACORN. Lewis is a co-founder of that party -- which endorsed Obama last year -- and has close ties to Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-New York) who has been most reluctant to have the House Judiciary subcommittee he chairs investigate ACORN.
Nadler invented the incredibly creative argument that recent legislative language aimed at depriving ACORN of federal funding constitutes an unconstitutional "bill of attainder." Perhaps singling out the mafia for a federal funds cutoff would be unconstitutional too in his eyes.
Meanwhile, the American public is beginning to realize that ACORN is a vast criminal conspiracy whose reach extends to the highest levels of the U.S. government.
Obama's statement that he's barely aware of ACORN's problems is nothing short of ridiculous, especially so because Patrick Gaspard was a political director for ACORN New York.
Last year he worked as national political director for the Obama campaign followed by a stint as associate personnel director for the Obama-Biden transition team.
As the old Washington saying goes, politics is personnel. Who knows how many administration officials were put in place by Gaspard with direct input from ACORN's Bertha Lewis. It boggles the mind.
We also now know the Obama administration was lying about ACORN's high level involvement in the 2010 Census. The coordination between ACORN and the Census was revealed as a result of a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the relentless investigator Tegan Millspaw of Judicial Watch. The Census and other government agencies have cut ties with ACORN as the ACORN scandal widens.
We have to wonder: when it comes to ACORN, what else is the Obama administration lying about?
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Matthew Vadum is a senior editor at Capital Research Center, a Washington, D.C. think tank that studies the politics of philanthropy.