Thursday, September 24, 2009

ACORN Gives New Meaning to the Old Adage "A Fool For a Client"

Here is a copy of the lawsuit filed by Acorn against Hannah Giles, James O'Keefe and Breitbart. The first page has been removed to protect personal information of all parties:

Click on the arrow in the top right corner to expand PDF
Zero Sheep's  has a full analysis of the law involved and assesses ACORN's case.  I won't summarize, it is best to read for yourself.  His conclusion:
My first thought was that ACORN would have some trouble showing standing and damages. After looking at the text of the complaint, my thought changed to, “Are you freaking kidding me?”

My original thoughts are still valid, I think, but the complaint is so bad that I am having a hard time believing that this isn’t all just a joke (albeit a dry and not very funny one only a lawyer would get).
Zero sheep mentions the analysis at NRO that was also linked by Ace.  Zero disagreed on a minor legal point, but agreed on most points.   It's an interesting analysis and worth a read, here is the bottom line:
In short, Learned Hand once said that he feared a lawsuit more than death or taxes. With good lawyering from the defendants (which I'm sure their going to get), ACORN is about to find out what Hand meant. ACORN has very little to gain and a lot to lose.

Far from believing the defendants have anything to fear, Greta Van Sustern actually wishes ACORN would file such a suit against her. She, of course, is thinking as a journalist here but is informed by her legal background:
By filing a lawsuit, ACORN just opened itself up for FULL DISCOVERY!! They are going to get hit with interrogatories, requests for production of documents, depositions etc. And who will get deposed? Just about everybody! And if discovery produces evidence of a crime? You can be sure that the evidence will be fed ex'd to the Justice Department!
As a journalist, she relishes the thoughts of what full discovery of ACORN might produce.   She did have a moments pause, however, when first reading the suit.  Greta was torn as to who was the bigger idiot, "the ACORN official making decisions for ACORN about a lawsuit? or the lawyer who is advising ACORN and who filed suit? or is it a tie?"

I will admit that my first impression was that the defendants may have broken the law but ACORN had more to lose than they would ever gain from a lawsuit. After reading the legal opinions I linked above and hearing Greta Van Sustern literally LOL'ing for 5 minutes tonight with Tucker Carlson over the sheer stupidity of the suit, I changed my opinion. This is only going to give Giles, O'Keefe and Breitbart a higher profile and bring some well deserved self-inflicted heartache to ACORN. Please weigh in with a comment, I would love to hear predictions on the outcome.

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