CNN 'birther buster' report 'perpetrates fraud'
Jerome R. Corsi
Network misrepresents microfilm birth record as Obama's
On the heels of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Cold Case Posse’s investigative trip to Hawaii, CNN pulled out old material – including microfilm misrepresented as Barack Obama’s birth certificate – to run a report called “Busting the Birther Conspiracy Theory.”
In the segment, broadcast May 30, reporter Gary Tuchman declared his intention to refute conclusively the contention Obama’s birth certificate is fraudulent.
Some careful observers, however, objected that the Tuchman report was a rebroadcast of material that CNN originally broadcast last year and possibly even earlier.
Moreover, CNN showed a microfilm copy of a birth certificate as if it were Obama’s original 1961 record. But it turned out to be someone else’s birth certificate.
At approximately the 1:22 mark of the segment, CNN displayed a microfilm copy of what viewers were led to believe was Obama’s birth certificate.
Close examination of a screen capture as seen in Exhibit 1 makes clear that the document is not Obama’s.
As seen in Exhibit 2, when the microfilm birth certificate is enlarged, the number appears to end with the digits “000,” while the computer-generated long-form birth certificate displayed on the White House website on April 27, 2011, bears the number “10641.”
After an extensive textual comparison between Exhibit 1, as broadcast by CNN May 30, and the Obama PDF posted on the White House website, blogger PixelPatriot declared CNN’s broadcast “fraudulent.”
“One does not have to look very far to know that a news organization can perpetrate ‘Fraud” on a level such that its impact on the American public is enormously widespread and devastating both to the organization committing an act of ‘Fraud,’ which is a crime, and to the public having been harmed,” PixelPatriot wrote, charging that CNN’s display of a false birth certificate was equivalent to the Jayson Blair scandal at the New York Times and the Killian document controversy that led to CBS anchor Dan Rather’s resignation.
As WND has reported, the Hawaii Department of Health has refused Arpaio’s request to release the microfilm record of Obama’s birth.
At 23 seconds into the report, Tuchman interviews the former director of the Hawaii Department of Health, Chiyome Fukino. The screen displays the subtitle “Gary Tuchman found proof in Hawaii in April 2011,” suggesting the interview with Fukino was most likely a year old.
“Where’s the Birth Certificate? The Case Barack Obama Is Not Eligible to Be President,” published by WND May 17, 2011, discusses thoroughly on pages 262-264 two statements by Fukino regarding Obama’s birth record.
Yet, the CNN May 30 broadcast completely ignored the questions raised in the WND book published a year ago.
What is clear is the content of Fukino’s interview added nothing new to statements she had made to the press dating back to 2008, when the Hawaii Department of Health was still supporting the short-form certification of live birth as the only Obama birth document that Hawaii law permitted the agency to make available to the public.
“In October 2008 and again in July 2009, Hawaiian officials reported that they had personally verified that Barack Obama’s original birth certificate was in the Hawaii State Department’s files,” Snopes.com wrote at that time in an entry now scrubbed from the site.
In an attempt to dispel the birth certificate controversy, FactCheck.org reported in 2008, “The director of Hawaii’s Department of Health confirmed Oct. 31 (2008) that Obama was born in Honolulu.”
FactCheck.org cited Associated Press reports that Fukino and Alvin Onaka, the Hawaii registrar of vital statistics, had personally verified that the health department “holds Obama’s original birth certificate” – the identical claim Fukino made in the May 30 CNN interview with Tuchman.
A close look at Fukino’s statement of Oct. 31, 2008 makes clear that it was carefully worded to give the impression that the Department of Health possessed Obama’s “original birth certificate,” even though that is not precisely what she said.
Here is the press release in question:
What Fukino said was that she had “personally seen and verified that the Hawaii State Department of Health has Sen. Obama’s original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures.”
The key phrase was the qualification “in accordance with state policies and procedures.”
That phrase was left out of the CNN report, and Tuchman did not press Fukino on the discrepancy.
The question remains whether the Hawaii Department of Health has on file in its vault a 1961 original, type-and-ink paper document that matches the PDF the White House posted on its website April 27, 2011.
Because Fukino’s statement of Oct. 31, 2008, was qualified, questions persisted. Eight months later, on July 27, 2009, she felt it necessary to issue a second statement:
What Fukino said precisely in the subsequent statement was that she had seen “the original vital records maintained by file by the Hawaii State Department of Health verifying Barack Hussein Obama was born in Hawaii and is a natural-born citizen.”
But what are these records?
Fundamentally, the Hawaii Department of Health only has verified that the short-form and long-form birth certificates are “abstracts” of Obama birth records the department has on file.
So far, the Hawaii Department of Health has withheld from public inspection the original 1961 Obama birth records the agency claims to hold on file.
The CNN May 30 broadcast displayed the 1961 announcements of Obama’s birth that were published in the two Honolulu newspapers, presenting them as if they were proof Obama was born in Hawaii.
The report ignored refutation of this contention presented in “Where’s the Birth Certificate?” on pages 74-76.
The book points out Hawaiian law in 1961 allowed registration of an unattended birth based on personal testimony, not documentary evidence a baby had been born in Hawaii.
The law in effect at the time of Obama’s birth was the Revised Laws of the Territory of Hawaii, 1955.
Chapter 57, “Vital Statistics,” in Section 57-9 opens the door for a family to make a false claim and obtain a Hawaii birth certificate for a child born outside the state, possibly even in a foreign country.
The section provides that in instances in which an unattended birth occurs outside a hospital, if neither parent of the newborn is available to prepare a birth certificate, “the local registrar shall secure the necessary information from any person having knowledge of the birth and prepare and file the necessary birth certificate.”
Clearly, Obama’s maternal grandparents could have presented themselves to a local registrar to obtain a birth certificate for the child, even if the child had actually been born in a foreign country.
The address in the two newspaper birth announcements, 6085 Kalanianaole Highway, was of the grandparents not the parents, who apparently never shared an address as a married couple.
The birth announcements published in the Hawaii newspapers prove only that Obama’s birth was registered in Hawaii, not that he was actually born there.
At approximately three minutes into the May 30 broadcast, Tuchman interviewed “long-time newspaper reporter in Honolulu” Dan Nakosa, without informing the viewers that Nakosa has not worked as a newspaper reporter in Honolulu for two years.
Nakosa correctly tells Tuchman that the newspaper published the birth announcements from records provided by the Hawaii Department of Health, not from advertisements placed by the parents or the families of the newborn children.
What Tuchman and Nakosa fail to discuss is the evidence provided on page 77 of “Where’s the Birth Certificate?” indicating:
Neither newspaper had an editor that handled birth announcements;
Both newspapers merely published birth announcements, directly as received, from information published in Hawaii DOH vital statistics announcements;
Hawaiian hospitals did not report to newspapers any birth announcement information; Hawaiian Certifications of Live Birth do not typically list hospital of birth or attending physician information;
Neither newspaper independently checked the truthfulness or accuracy of birth announcement information from Hawaii DOH vital statistics records;
Errors and misstatements in birth announcements published in the two Hawaiian newspapers can and do result from incorrect information recorded in vital statistic information published by the Hawaiian DOH.
Moreover, the 1961 publication of birth announcements by the two Honolulu newspapers was haphazard at best.
The papers apparently published the announcements when space needed to be filled in the paid classified advertisement section.
Many birth announcements were published in one newspaper and not the other; birth announcements were rarely published the same day in both newspapers; and many hundreds of births were never reported in the newspapers at all, especially if the child was born to an unmarried woman.
No birth announcement listed where the birth occurred, meaning unattended births were reported identically as if the birth had occurred in a hospital attended by a physician.
Memories of baby Obama?
At 3:42 into the May 30 report, Tuchman interviews Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, who has asserted he knew Obama’s parents, remembers the birth and visited with they young family when Obama was an infant.
Again, CNN failed to review the discrepancies in Abercombie’s recollections of Obama’s birth and infancy in Hawaii.
WND has documented that shortly after the baby’s birth, Obama’s mother left Hawaii with her infant son and moved to Seattle, where she enrolled in night courses at the University of Washington.
WND has further documented that Ann Dunham did not return to Hawaii with her son until after Barack Obama Sr. left the islands in 1962 to attend graduate school at Harvard.
In an interview published by the New York Times Dec. 24, 2010, Abercrombie distinguished that he did not see Dunham and her newly born son at the hospital. But he claimed to remember the couple bringing the baby to social events, which is unlikely if Dunham was in Seattle, not Hawaii, and Dunham and Obama Sr. never lived together.
CNN also did not report Abercrombie’s much publicized failure after he first took office to fulfill his promise to find the authentic 1961 original Obama birth certificate and show it to the American public.