After seeking $11 billion in taxpayer funds for retooling and a $9 billion credit line from the U.S. government,Â Ford Motor CompanyÂ decided to contribute to community organizer/racial agitatorÂ Al Sharpton’s National Action Network (NAN), helping to finance the group’sÂ 2009 national convention in New York City in April.
NAN didnâ€™t say how much money Ford gave, butÂ the National Legal and Policy CenterÂ (NLPC) reports that a “sponsor” designation for last yearâ€™s (2008) event cost $50,000.Â Thus itÂ is not unlikely that Ford forked over at least that much, despite having lost $14.6 billion last year, and despite havingÂ recently shuttered 17 plants and laid off more than 50,000 workers.
At this year’sÂ NAN convention, Vice President JoeÂ BidenÂ was a featured speakerÂ even thoughÂ during the 2008 campaign,Â Sharpton had strongly criticized the gaffe-proneÂ Biden when the latterÂ described then-presidential candidate Barack Obama as “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy.”
Sharpton’s bruised ego had healed, however,Â by the time this month’s NAN convention was held. As theÂ NLPC reported:
Sharpton seemed pleased by the administrationâ€™s attention. He said, “I think it’s noteworthy that this is the first civil rights organization the administration has sent their top people to New York as vice-president.â€
What a difference a year makes.