By Collin Roth
Exclusive new documents obtained from the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office reveal that a nearly 14-month-long voter fraud investigation continues to move forward with new details emerging about the targeted SEIU Senior Organizer. In September and October of 2012, the Milwaukee DA’s office issued subpoenas to Bank of America and the Service Employee International Union (SEIU) for records pertaining to Clarence S. Haynes, a Florida labor organizer who voted in April 2011 from a suburban Milwaukee hotel.
Media Trackers first uncovered Haynes’ 2011 vote after it was revealed that Haynes and two other SEIU organizers voted from a Glendale, Wisconsin Residence Inn. Not only did the three vote from a hotel, but they used the hotel paperwork and out-of-state ID’s as proof of residence. Below is Haynes’ election day registration form that shows his proof of residence included a military ID and Residence Inn paperwork.
Since the initial story in October 2011, the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit focused the investigation on SEIU Senior Organizer Clarence S. Haynes. Statements obtained from fellow SEIU organizers in December 2011 revealed that Haynes was not offered a job in Wisconsin and they did not currently know his whereabouts. A review of records revealed that Haynes maintained a permanent address in Clearwater, Florida and the DA issued subpoenas and search warrants in November and December 2011 for hotel records, phone records, and Haynes’ private Gmail account.
Affidavits from Assistant District Attorney Bruce Landgraf suggest that “there is probable cause to believe that Mr. Haynes voted without the proper qualifications as an elector when he cast a ballot on April 5, 2011… and I submit that there is reason to believe that Mr. Haynes had no intent to remain a resident of the State of Wisconsin at that time he made such a representation to Glendale election officials.”
In May 2012, Media Trackers uncovered SEIU documents revealing that the union spent $146,000 in 2011 on the Glendale hotel where Haynes stayed and voted. ADA Landgraf’s affidavit reveals that as many as 50 SEIU employees lived at the hotel in late 2010 and early 2011.
As Milwaukee prosecutors continued to gather evidence that Clarence Haynes had “no present intent” to remain in Wisconsin at the time of his April 2011 vote, another subpoena was issued in April 2012 to SEIU headquarters in Washington D.C. The subpoena sought employment records and salary information for Haynes in an attempt to discern “Mr Haynes’ intent to remain in the metropolitan Milwaukee area.” Under Wisconsin law, an intent to remain in the state immediately following an election is key in determining whether a vote was fraudulently cast.
By October 2012, the latest round of subpoenas were issued in the year-long investigation. They sought Haynes’ records at Bank of America as well as all SEIU communication regarding Haynes.
New information from the October 2012 affidavit reveal that prosecutors believe Clarence Haynes left Wisconsin in April 2011 shortly after voting in the spring election. His Bank of America debit card posted a final transaction in Glendale, Wisconsin on April 11, 2011. And in the months May through August 2011, Haynes’ debit card transactions “appear to be concentrated for the most part in the State of Florida.”
In addition, prosecutors appear to be investigating a tax discrepancy revealed by Haynes’ bank records. According to the SEIU, Clarence Haynes’ last day of work was May 5, 2011. He received two large payments in the weeks after May 5, totaling just over $75,000 as part of what prosecutors believe to be a severance package. But from January to May 2011, subpoenaed Bank of America records reveal Haynes received regular wages “of about $1,800 to $1,900 from SEIU directly deposited into his account.” At issue is the fact that Clarence Haynes’ 2011 W2 tax form subpoenaed from the SEIU shows $0 in wages earned by Haynes, perhaps suggesting that Haynes did not report the $75,000 payment or regular wages as taxable income.
And according to U.S. Department of Labor documents, Clarence S. Haynes earned a total package of $142,444.00 from the SEIU in 2011 as a Senior Organizer.
Milwaukee County prosecutors continue to dig into former SEIU organizer Clarence Haynes, but evidence uncovered by the DA reveals the fact that Haynes voted in Wisconsin in April 2011 and headed home to Florida shortly thereafter. Proving Haynes’ intent at the time of his 2011 vote may prove a difficult task, but the year-long investigation reveals that the Milwaukee County DA’s office is taking this case seriously. But perhaps most important, the Haynes case reveals the ease with which a voter can potentially defraud the system and the extremely high burden of proof required to prosecute that voter.
If convicted, senior SEIU organizer Clarence Haynes could face a Class I Felony, the penalty being a fine of up to $10,000, or imprisonment of up to 3-1/2 years, or both.
For more on this story from Media Trackers, click here.