A Brooklyn judge Friday delayed enforcement of a new federal law that cut off funding to the controversial community organization ACORN.
Judge Nina Gershon said the government violated ACORN's right to due process before enacting a law that threatened to financially destroy the organization.
"The question here is only whether the Constitution allows Congress to declare that a single, named organization is barred from all federal funding in the absence of a trial," Gershon wrote in a 21-page decision.
She said ACORN had proved it would suffer "irreparable harm" if the money was cut off.
ACORN lawyers expect the feds to open the purse strings soon. The Justice Department said the decision is under review.
PDF of Ruling.
As was pointed out by Rep. Alan Grayson, the judge found that Congresses Hysterical Action against ACORN was in fact a Unconstitutional Bill Of Attainder - since the act targeted a single individual or agency without benefit of a trial.
Here Grayson Grills Rep. Paul Broun on the subject.
GRAYSON: I’d like to ask the gentleman from Georgia a few questions, and I’ll yield to him for the purpose of having answers to these questions. Does the gentleman from Georgia know what a bill of Attainder is?
BROUN: A bill of, the answer’s yes, in fact it’s been very explicitly described by the court’s.
GRAYSON: What is it?
BROUN: [long pause. Scrambling through papers.] The courts have applied a two pronged test. Number one, whether specific individuals or entities are affected by the staute, Number two, when the legislation affects a “punishment,” on those individuals, it serves no legitamate regulatory purpose.
GRAYSON: What, um, does the Constitution says about Bills of Attainder?
BROUN: Oh, I suggest that this is not a Bill of Attainder. It’s, um, certainly does focus on a specific entity, but it does not inflict punishment by any means. In fact...
GRAYSON: Will the gentleman from Georgia explain what the Constitution says about Bills of Attainder?
ANOTHER CONGRESSMAN: Mr. Chairman, will the gentleman yield for a second? The gentleman from Florida?
GRAYSON: No. I’d like an answer to my question. [...]
GRAYSON: The question is, will the gentleman from Georgia agree with me that the Bill of Attainder clause was intended not as a narrow or technical provision, but as an implementation of the seperation of powers, and a general safeguard against legislative exercise of the judicial function, or more simply, trial by legislature. Will the gentleman agree to that?
BROUN: No, sir, I will not, and I ask counsel to help us with this. I think all this is determination of the court and I’d like to appeal to Mr. Sensenberner.
Speaking of Trials... an Independent Investigation recently found that ACORN committed No Crimes in the Video "Sting" which ignited the anti-ACORN firestorm which led to Congress misguided legislation.
"We did not find a pattern of intentional, illegal conduct by ACORN staff involved; in fact, no action, illegal or otherwise, was ever taken by any ACORN employee on behalf of the videographers," Harshbarger said in a statement. "Instead, the videos represent the byproduct of ACORN's longstanding management weaknesses, including a lack of training, a lack of procedures and a lack of onsite supervision."
Meanwhile the videographers themselves who apparently thought showing up at a predominantly Black organization as a Pimp and Prostitute was a Good Idea - and were subsequently thrown out of several ACORN Offices before they eventual got any incriminating footage - may still face illegal wiretap charges themselves.
Baltimore, MD – September 11, 2009 – We have received inquiries from citizens and the media asking whether the Baltimore City State’s Attorneys Office would initiate a criminal investigation for acts allegedly committed at ACORN offices located in Baltimore. The only information received in reference to this alleged criminal behavior was a YouTube video. Upon review by this office, the video appears to be incomplete. In addition, the audio portion could possibly have been obtained in violation of Maryland Law, Annotated Code of Maryland Courts and Judicial Proceedings Article §10-402, which requires two party consent.
If it is determined that the audio portion now being heard on YouTube was illegally obtained, it is also illegal under Maryland Law to willfully use or willfully disclose the content of said audio. The penalty for the unlawful interception, disclosure or use of it is a felony punishable up to 5 years.
You mean going around taping people without their consent or knowledge is like - a Felony? I guess these guys just thought they were the "Little Citizen's NSA". Not.
Hey dude, sorry to harsh your mellow but even Ashton Kutcher knows you need to get everyone to sign a release form before they show up on Punk'D!
Here's Giles and Breitbart claiming that no ACORN Office "Rebuffed or Refused the help them"...
HANNITY: So, in other words, when you go to Baltimore and D.C. and New York and San Bernardino and San Diego, and this all happened, were there any cities you went to where you just didn't get any videotape not worthy to air?
GILES: We are airing it. It's pretty worthy. Everyone seems to be --
HANNITY: In other words, you didn't go into one office, and they said, "We're not going to help you do anything like that?"
HANNITY: Not one? Every place you went, they helped you or were willing to help you, either -- not report you for an underaged prostitution ring --
BREITBART: Well --
HANNITY: -- evade taxes, as we've --
BREITBART: Right. The -- it is interesting. There's no place, as ACORN tried to state, that kicked them out based upon the premise that they were doing something nefarious.
O'Keefe: None of the facilities "Kicked Us out" - that's a Lie.
Except that they didn't get help everywhere they went...not hardly. Whose the Liar?
And that Police Report would be here:
Meanwhile Color of Change, the organization which successfully managed to get 80 advertisers to pull out of the Glenn Beck Show has manage to get a retraction for defamation carried out then by a Pro-Glenn Beck Website.
After ColorOfChange.org took on Glenn Beck for his race-baiting and fear-mongering, Beck's supporters fought back using lies, distortions, and more race-baiting to defend him. DefendGlenn.com was the worst, mounting a campaign to scare advertisers into staying on his show.
After we threatened them with a lawsuit, DefendGlenn.com has backpedalled. It should make clear to advertisers who have pulled their support that they've done the right thing
DefendGlenn.com, the website created and dedicated to supporting controversial Fox News personality Glenn Beck, today issued a public retraction of several erroneous statements it made regarding civil rights organization ColorOfChange.org. The site has posted the retraction on its home page - www.DefendGlenn.com - and, per an agreement, must keep it there for seven full weeks.
This is what happens when you seek to spread FEAR BASED ON LIES - eventually you get spanked, hard.
Hey, Fox News...ARE YOU LISTENING?