ACORN was cleared of criminal wrongdoing by Brooklyn prosecutors and the supposedly incriminating tape was found to have been edited. New York Daily News reports:
Brooklyn prosecutors on Monday cleared ACORN of criminal wrongdoing after a four-month probe that began when undercover conservative activists filmed workers giving what appeared to be illegal advice on how to hide money.
While the video by James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles seemed to show three ACORN workers advising a prostitute how to hide ill-gotten gains, the unedited version was not as clear, according to a law enforcement source.
“They edited the tape to meet their agenda,” said the source.
O’Keefe and Giles – who visited ACORN offices in several cities, including its Brooklyn headquarters – stirred controversy when they posted the videos on their Web site.
They were hailed as heroes by the likes of Rush Limbaugh and their footage led several government agencies to temporarily cut funding for ACORN as the prosecutors opened an investigation.
“On Sept. 15, 2009, my office began an investigation into possible criminality on the part of three ACORN employees,” Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes said in a one-paragraph statement issued Monday afternoon.
“That investigation is now concluded and no criminality has been found.”
Update: Many of the attacks on Acorn from the right wing were based upon false information spread by Andrew Breitbart. Media Matters reports that Breitbart has walked back his claims of criminality on the part of ACORN.
Even though the evidence against ACORN has been shown to have been fabricated my bet is that this will not change the attitude of most on the right. They enjoy living in their fantasy world and have far too many defenses built up to protect them from facing reality.
The American right wing has become an authoritarian movement which operates by fabricating false evidence to demonize their opponents. They will hold to their fantasies about ACORN just as many on the right still think that Saddam was involved with the 9/11 attack, there was WMD in Iraq at the time of the war, that the claims of the Swift Boat Liars about John Kerry were anything other than politically motivated lies, and that Barack Obama is a Muslim born outside of the United States.