Reporting from Washington — ACORN, a national organization whose mission included registering and turning out low-income and minority voters, announced on this election day that it was filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
Founded in 1970, the Assn. of Community Organizations for Reform Now had in recent years become a target of conservatives who accused the group of engaging in widespread voter fraud. It was forced to scale back its efforts after a scandal erupted, centered around undercover video footage that purported to show ACORN staff helping young activists posing as a pimp and prostitute engage in illegal activity.
Subsequent investigations found that the footage had been substantially edited, but the damage was done. Congress ultimately passed Republican-backed amendments to appropriations legislation that ended federal funding for the group.
"For over 40 years ACORN has fought the good fight," Bertha Lewis, the group's CEO, said in a news release today. But a "barrage of unmitigated accusations certainly took its toll," and the "ongoing political onslaught caused irreparable harm."