ACORN Office Vandalized After McCain Comment

This story speaks for itself. John McCain calls ACORN a threat to the fabric of American democracy in the final presidential debate and the group becomes a target of politically inspired violence.

Below is the top of the report from Greg Gordon of McClatchy's Washington bureau.

Death threat, vandalism hit ACORN after McCain comments

By Greg Gordon | McClatchy Newspapers
WASHINGTON - An ACORN community organizer received a death threat and the liberal activist group's Boston and Seattle offices were vandalized Thursday, reflecting mounting tensions over its role in registering 1.3 million mostly poor and minority Americans to vote next month.

Attorneys for ACORN - short for the Association of Community Organizers for Reform Now - were notifying the FBI and the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division of the incidents, said Brian Kettenring, a Florida-based spokesman for the group.

Republicans, including presidential candidate John McCain, have attacked the group repeatedly in recent days, alleging a widespread vote-fraud scheme, although they have provided little proof. It was disclosed Thursday that the FBI is examining whether thousands of fraudulent voter registration applications submitted by some ACORN workers were part of a systematic effort or were merely isolated incidents.

Kettenring said that a senior ACORN staffer in Cleveland, after appearing on television this week, got an email stating that she "is going to have her life ended."

A woman staffer in Providence, R.I., also got a threatening call from someone who said words to the effect that "we know you get off work at nine," and then made racial epithets, he said.

McClatchy is withholding both of the women's names because of the threats.

Separately, vandals broke into the group's Boston and Seattle offices and stole the group's computers, Kettenring said.

The incidents came the day after McCain warned in the final presidential debate that ACORN's voter registration drive "may be perpetrating one of the greatest frauds in voter history" and may be "destroying the fabric of democracy."

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