Barack Obama has sought repeatedly to distance himself has from the politically radioactive group ACORN, but White House records show that ACORN CEO Bertha E. Lewis visited him in the White House in early September.
The visitor log posted on the White House Web site indicates that Lewis had made an appointment to visit the White House at 12:30 p.m. on Sept. 5. But Andrew Breitbart’s blog BigGovernment.com reports that Lewis canceled the appointment the night before and rescheduled it for 10 a.m. that day.
The ACORN chief apparently received VIP treatment, with a private staff tour of the White House and a meeting in the White House residence, the latter of which is possible only with a presidential invitation, a source familiar with security procedures tells Newsmax.
The visit took place just five days before James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles released their undercover videos of ACORN workers advising them about prostitution.
The videos subsequently provided many in Congress with impetus to pull the plug on ACORN’s federal funding.
The president later told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos ACORN’s funding wasn’t a priority for him.
"Frankly, it's not something I've followed closely," Mr. Obama said, adding he was not aware ACORN had been a large recipient of federal money.
"This is not the biggest issue facing the country. It's not something I'm paying a lot of attention to."
Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund wrote in a Sept. 29 column that the president’s refusal to say whether he would support cutting off federal dollars to ACORN in spite of widespread allegations of corruption was only the latest in a series of disingenuous comments he has made trying to escape the group’s shadow.
Lewis, who has not returned to the White House, according to records, responded to the scandal by firing the involved workers and by saying opponents have been engaging in “a modern-day type of McCarthyism” in targeting her group for scrutiny.
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