By Frank Arduini
How an obscure southern preacher became a hero to “Birthers,” a laughing stock to “Obots,” and the single worst Baptist prognosticator of the future since William Miller.
Reed Hayes was presented to the world in a lie.
During Zullo’s CSPOA presentation on June 1, 2013, at the tail end of a video narrated by erstwhile Posse mouthpiece Mark Gillar, it was suddenly announced that:
Some of the anomalies that we have pointed out today were first discovered by a certified document examiner named Reed Hayes.
The problem with this opening assertion is that exactly none of the anomalies that were pointed out were “first discovered by… Reed Hayes.” Every single one of them was already “old news” at the time of the Posse’s first press conference in March of 2012, long before Hayes and the Posse had ever crossed paths. Hayes was being given credit for things that he did not deserve primarily because as we would quickly learn, Zullo was unwilling to give him credit for anything he did deserve. He did something. But nobody would ever learn what.
Reed Hayes was not exactly in the first string if you were trying to field a team of forensic experts. According to Zullo he was the 213th such “expert” the Posse had approached in the effort to get somebody… anybody with credentials to look at the Whitehouse PDF. To put this in perspective, the Posse could have filled out more than half the teams in the NBA before they got around to asking Hayes to play. Birthers can’t be choosers.
But let us be clear on what is certainly the most important fact regarding Reed Hayes and Posse investigation out of the gate. No one outside of the Posse has ever seen four sentences from the “Reed Hayes Report.” At the June 1st presentation Gillar quoted only two though they have been repeated ad nauseam by Gallups and Zullo ever since.
“In over 20 years of examining documentation of various types I have never seen a document that is so seriously questionable in so many respects. In my opinion the birth certificate is entirely fabricated.”
Clearly, these were useful sentences for the Posse’s purposes. A month later in another online article, Zullo would add part of a third:
“…based on my observations and findings, it is clear that the Certificate of Live Birth I examined is not a scan of an original paper birth certificate, but a digitally manufactured document created by utilizing material from various sources,”
To this day, those three (or is it two and a half?) useful sentences constitute the full extent of what has ever been disclosed from Hayes’ report. Given the desperate secrecy surrounding the rest of the report’s alleged 40 pages, it is fair to speculate that they are probably the only three useful sentences in the entire thing. Hayes cannot actually be challenged on these conclusions because there is no visibility into their context, why he reached them, or even a single one of the “respects” that he claims to have found “questionable.”
The report remains a complete bogeyman.
At the time of the original revelation of Hayes’ involvement, Zullo’s tendency to conceal exculpatory evidence was already a well established pattern. During the second Posse press conference, a passing mention was made of “tests” performed for the investigation by Tim Selaty. He was included so that Zullo could incorporate the number of “tests” he performed into a grand total number that Zullo wished to sound impressive. But Selaty’s actual report was withheld because it actually contradicted several of Zullo’s basic claims about the birth certificate. In that same press conference, Zullo also depended heavily on the alleged testimony of a retired Hawaii registrar to support claims (which were quickly proved false) regarding the numbering and coding on the President’s BC. A recording of the phone conversation from which this testimony was allegedly gleaned was claimed to exist and reporters asked if they could hear it. It still has never been released.
Reed Hayes’ actual report was likewise carefully insulated from critical scrutiny by a cone of silence that descended around it. Zullo even went so far as to copyright the report, ostensibly to keep it out of the hands of “civil litigation” (read: Orly Taitz). In the absence of any substantive handles to grab, the blogosphere jumped on the only other thing they actually had available with which to consider Hayes’ participation; his Curriculum Vitae. And in the face of Obot observations that the CV was not actually all that impressive, Gallups helped lead the charge to pump it up.
Let’s concede that in the narrow and sometimes questionable field of handwriting analysis, Hayes has a reputation. And certainly there are three signatures on the birth certificate that might lend themselves to some sort of review by an expert in that area. But even the most diehard of birthers quickly understood how thin a reed (pun intended) this was to lean upon for a claim of the document being “entirely fabricated.” Haye’s CV was otherwise glaringly devoid of the actual experience one would expect of an “expert” asked to analyze a digital document like the Whitehouse PDF.
By the time of a June 4th PPSIMMONS article, Zullo was putting a somewhat more evolved spin on Hayes and his credentials:
This ought to serve as a warning shot across the bow to the naysayers of our criminal investigation in the Obama fraud case. The impressive credentials of Mr. Hayes, and the fact that he has testified in court cases for Perkins-Coie coupled with the fact that Mr. Hayes is a registered Democrat, demonstrates the integrity of our investigation and our conviction that we possess incontrovertible evidence to back our case. It must be emphasized that we possess much more evidence similar to this revelation that we have not yet released for public information.
In actuality, it was not a “fact” that Hayes had ever “testified in court cases for Perkins-Coie.” The detail that Hayes had once done some unspecified work for a single attorney associated with that law firm had been noticed first by one of the eagle-eyed partisans on the right-wing Free Republic forum. It was quickly exaggerated into imaginary expert testimony in an imaginary court case. By Zullo’s count, Hayes had “testified 26 times in various courtroom proceedings in Hawaii” and all of them were at that time (but apparently no longer) cited in his online CV. Some were simply arbitration hearings, and in at least one his appearance was made over the phone. None were in Federal Court.
None of them showed any involvement by Perkins-Coie.
The claim that Hayes was also a “registered Democrat” further demonstrated the tendency of Zullo to pay little attention to the actual details of his off-hand assertions. While Hayes very well may be a Democrat, Hawaii is among the states in which voters do not register their party affiliation. Whatever Hayes might be, a “registered” anything was not on the list.
By July 8th, the inflation of Hayes’ CV had continued apace. In an “interview” by Gallups associate Grace Vuoto that bears only passing resemblance to an interview, Hayes had evolved into some sort of in-house expert for Perkins-Coie. What had previously only been vague references to “cases” plural now explicitly becomes regular work. Vuoto paraphrased Zullo this way:
This is a key development, asserts Lt. Zullo, because Mr. Hayes is a certified handwriting analyst and forensic document examiner who worked repeatedly for Perkins Coie, a reputable law firm, and was deemed a dependable professional in their legal cases. Moreover, Perkins Coie has defended Mr. Obama in his legal jousts on the birth certificate matter over the past five years.
Again… there is no evidence that Hayes “repeatedly” did anything for Perkins-Coie, let alone was considered “a dependable professional in their legal cases.”
A month later in an August 2nd PPSIMMONS Radio posting titled, “100% PROMISES! The Obama Fraud Case – LATEST UPDATE” Gallups was running even further with the exaggeration of Hayes’ credentials.
Reed Hayes, an expert digital document examiner court certified as an expert witness and used as an expert witness by Obama’s own attorneys in the past through Perkins-Coie out of Hawaii. And Reed Hayes is a Democrat who lives in Hawaii and works in Hawaii. Reed Hayes, he filed a forty page sworn affidavit into the file of evidence in the Obama fraud case. He too is criminally liable, and he too has placed his entire reputation, business and livelihood on the line.
This account contains at least three clear falsehoods, two of them new.
First, nowhere in Hayes experience or training is there anything that would suggest he is an “expert digital document” examiner. His expertise lay entirely in the area of traditional handwriting analysis, and betrays no competence in “digital” anything. Even Zullo in his original reveal had merely referred to him as a “document examiner.”
Second, and as we have already noted, there is no evidence that Hayes has ever once been “used as an expert witness by Obama’s own attorneys.” Gallups gratuitously gilds the fake lily here by also specifying that this was “Perkins-Coie out of Hawaii” when the only reference in Hayes’ CV to Perkins-Coie at all specifies that it was for a lawyer out of Seattle, Washington. From the broadest details to the most narow, Gallups is wrong again.
Third, Hayes “filed” nothing, let alone a forty page sworn affidavit, anywhere. Gallups here is trying very hard to make it appear that Hayes filed an affidavit under penalty of perjury in the failed Alabama Supreme Court appeal for which Zullo did contribute an affidavit. But the only document Hayes has ever actually been alleged to provide is his copyrighted 40 page report to Zullo; a report that is not a “sworn affidavit,” that was never submitted to the Alabama court, and that exposes him to no criminal liability whatsoever. The entirety of Hayes’ contribution to the Alabama court case was Zullo’s inclusion of the three useful sentences in his own affidavit.
Hayes was never even mentioned by name.
Whatever work Hayes had actually performed for the Posse, whatever technical conclusions he had reached regarding whatever details he may have analyzed, none of that was destined to ever see the light of day. Sheriff Arpaio was himself so disinterested in the investigation by this point that he couldn’t even be bothered to read the Hayes report, trusting Zullo (he said) to tell him what it contained. As with so many others of the Posse’s false starts, feints and pump fakes, the Hayes report eventually faded into another birther myth to which the faithful could point but that they could never defend. There was nothing there to defend.
Three useful sentences are not a report.
To be continued…
[RC: This is the seventh in a series of guest articles by Frank Arduini. Here is Part VI.]