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Was ACORN Embezzlement Really $5 Million Instead of $1 Million?

Posted By Matthew Vadum On October 8, 2009 @ 4:15 am In NewsReal Blog | No Comments

On his TV show, Glenn Beck examined the allegation that ACORN founder Wade Rathke’s brother Dale (shown living the good life at left in photo above) actually embezzled $5 million instead of the commonly cited figure of close to $1 million.

The Louisiana attorney general’s office says the embezzlement at ACORN years ago involved $5 million, not the originally reported figure of close to $1 million, according to BigGovernment.com which cites a report from NOLA.com.

The $5 million figure is mentioned in a subpoena. My sources inside ACORN say the $5 million figure is an exaggeration and ACORN chief organizer Bertha Lewis, who lied repeatedly during a National Press Club speech Tuesday, denied the figure was $5 million.

Perhaps this is the first time ACORN has told the truth.

Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell, a Democrat, told Beck he’s “looking where the information leads us.”

Meanwhile, last night I learned of a draft legislative amendment from the office of Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), one of ACORN’s few remaining steadfast friends in the U.S. Senate. This amendment number 2647 to H.R. 2847, the fiscal 2010 spending bill for the Commerce Department, directs the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to “conduct a review and audit of Federal funds awarded to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now…or any subsidiary or affiliate of ACORN.”

According to the amendment, the GAO would determine:

whether any Federal funds were misused and, if so, the total amount of Federal funds involved and how such funds were misused; what steps, if any, have been taken to recover any Federal funds that were misused; what steps should be taken to prevent the misuse of any Federal funds; and whether all necessary steps have been taken to prevent the misuse of any Federal funds.

Acting U.S. Comptroller General Gene L. Dodaro, who runs GAO, would have 180 days from the time the legislation is enacted to report the results of the audit to Congress. As Senate majority whip, Durbin wouldn’t have taken this dramatic step without the approval of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

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