On Fox & Friends, Steve Doocy repeated the falsehood that the economic stimulus bill includes "$4 billion for ACORN." In fact, the bill does not mention ACORN or otherwise single it out for funding.
During the January 29 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy repeated the falsehood that the economic stimulus bill includes "$4 billion for ACORN." Doocy claimed: "They are spending $4.19 billion for neighborhood stabilization activities -- ACORN. Four billion for ACORN. Let me get this straight. So we're giving $4 billion for ACORN." In fact, as Media Matters for America has documented, the bill contains no language mentioning ACORN. The false claim is based on a misrepresentation of a provision that would appropriate $4,190,000,000 "for neighborhood stabilization activities related to emergency assistance for the redevelopment of abandoned and foreclosed homes." The bill would require that money be distributed through competitive processes and states that "not less than $3,440,000,000 shall be allocated by a competition" to "States, units of general local government, and nonprofit entities or consortia of nonprofit entities." It also provides that "up to $750,000,000 shall be awarded by competition to nonprofit entities or consortia of nonprofit entities to provide community stabilization assistance."
Doocy's claim echoes material released by House Minority Leader John Boehner's (R-OH) office. A January 26 "fast facts" release claimed of the stimulus bill: "The legislation could open billions of taxpayer dollars to left-wing groups like the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), which has been accused of voter fraud, is reportedly under federal investigation; and played a key role in the housing meltdown." A January 23 release to which the January 26 document links stated that "the Democrats' bill makes groups like ACORN eligible for a $4.19 billion pot of money for 'neighborhood stabilization activities.' "
Additionally, Doocy baselessly suggested that the possible reduction of mail delivery by the U.S. Postal Service is related to the purported $4 billion funding to ACORN. Doocy stated: "But we're going to get rid of one of my days of delivery? That doesn't -- does that seem like a good trade to you?"
From the January 29 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:
DOOCY: The postmaster general said it is possible that the cost of six-day delivery may simply prove to be unaffordable, because there's a possibility that, for the first time, they will have a $6 billion deficit. If they were to get rid of one day of delivery, they can save $3 billion.
DOOCY: Here's the thing: This is going to -- it's going to cost -- they're going to save $3 billion, right, if they eliminate one day? I was looking into the stimulus that they passed yesterday. They are spending $4.19 billion for neighborhood stabilization activities -- ACORN. Four billion for ACORN.
GRETCHEN CARLSON (co-host): Interesting.
DOOCY: Let me get this straight. So we're giving $4 billion for ACORN, but we're going to get rid of one of my days of delivery?
BRIAN KILMEADE (co-host): Right.
DOOCY: That doesn't -- does that seem like --
CARLSON: I thought -- I thought --
DOOCY: -- a good trade to you?
CARLSON: Yeah, I thought something happened to ACORN after all that fuss about it.
DOOCY: It stayed in, and not only that, but they added hundreds of billions -- hundreds of millions of dollars for sex education.
CARLSON: That's another nugget that you found?
DOOCY: Yeah, [inaudible] sex education.
KILMEADE: How expensive is that? All you need is pictures.
DOOCY: Not sex education. Let me get this right before you go.
CARLSON: You did some studying last night.
DOOCY: Took out $200 million for -- they took out the $200 million for birth control, but they left in $335 million for sexually transmitted diseases.
CARLSON: Oh my goodness. All right, well let's --
DOOCY: How does that relate to stimulating the economy?
KILMEADE: I'm not sure.
CARLSON: Yeah, that's a little different.
KILMEADE: That's why there's not a Republican that voted for it.
Lauryn Bruck is an intern for Media Matters for America.