Updated 3:40 p.m.
Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) on Friday called on President Barack Obama to exclude the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now from participating in the 2010 Census.
“The people of this nation deserve a census that is conducted in a fair and accurate manner, using the best methods to determine the outcome, and that is free from political tampering, wrote Shelby, ranking member of the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. “Given ACORN’s history and political connections, the U.S. Census Bureau should not partner with an organization that has systemic problems with both accuracy and legitimacy.
The nonprofit organization — which became a thorn in the side of the Obama campaign last year as Republicans criticized it for perpetrating voter fraud — signed on as a partner in next year’s Census, along with a host of other groups.
The ACORN issue is the latest in a series of partisan flaps over the 2010 Census.
Earlier this year, Obama came under fire from Republicans when he suggested the White House would oversee the effort, rather than the Commerce Department.
The White House later clarified its position, however, stating the Census director will report to the Commerce secretary.
Key House Republicans complained that ACORN’s involvement in the process would corrupt the integrity of the census.
“There is no excuse for letting a hyperpartisan organization like ACORN handle such a sensitive matter,— said House Republican Study Committee Chairman Tom Price (Ga.).