Lois Lerner, the IRS official who is at the center of the scandal involving the IRS attacks on the Tea Party tried to be really slick yesterday.


Who knows who advised her to do what she did, but there is a certain joy we all have when liberals try to be smart and end up outsmarting themselves.


What did she do and how is it going to come back to bite her?


She tried to invoke her 5th Amendment rights but showing the kind of competence liberals often show, she screwed up. 


Lerner asked to be excused from testifying, informing the House Oversight Committee she would be invoking her 5th Amendment rights and declining to answer questions.


Someone did not like the image that would convey.  So someone came up with a bright idea.  Lerner would defend herself in an opening statement, then refuse to answer any other questions.




If a lawyer advised her to do that perhaps they should not have slept through school the day they taught law in law school.


Under the law, certain privileges exist but if you are not careful, they can be waived.


Lerner did just that.


In a trial, a witness is not allowed to make a statement to the jury, then refuse to answer questions.


By making this opening statement, Lerner waived her right to assert the 5th Amendment.


She blew it.


Fortunately some bright members of the House Committee realized this and are now going to call her back to testify.


They need to do more than that.


They need to find her in contempt of Congress and jail her.


The Congress has its own jail and can jail people for contempt.


If Congress holds Lerner in contempt and jails her, it will be the only jail cell she is likely to see since the Obama Regime will never prosecute her and no matter how strong the pressure is, Eric Holder will never appoint a special prosecutor.


We in the conservative movement must understand what will and will not happen in the IRS scandal.


Unless we can get a conservative President elected in 2016 and the statute of limitations does not run by the time that President can get an Attorney General confirmed and launch and investigation, the chances of seeing any of the IRS officials go to prison, even though many of them deserve it, is nil.


What we can do is use these scandals to destroy the Obama Regime and ensure the Party of Treason is voted out of office in 2014 and 2016.  


As for Lois Lerner, she is a long time leftist political hack.  If government were not so big, she might have had to get a real job.  Instead she has made her government career by going after conservative groups.


She needs to be fired, stripped of her pension and any other benefits she might have “earned” and be shown the inside of a jail cell.


Perhaps when that happens, others will understand that the power of the government is not to be used to oppress those who disagree with you.

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Per Glenn Beck it's time to treat the IRS like they treat us.
Call your representative & senators to let them know that you expect them to
             *Freeze the paychecks of all IRS employees
             *Take back all bonuses
              *Freeze Assets
              *Lock the doors
They've gone past the deadline & they need to do what they would do to us.
The IRS should have to obey the same laws that we have to obey
You want to see whistleblowers step forward......cut off their pay
http://house.gov            http://senate.gov

Put holder and obumer in jail while you are at it congress

Jailing Lois Lerner now would be refreshing, wouldn't it? It would send the message that Congress has power to do more than hold ineffectual hearings. Arguably, contemptibly ineffectual hearings!
Jailing her would send the message to all called to testify that contempt of Congress isn't such a good idea.

Best of all, perhaps, would be the effect on the media and "Lo Info" voters! They would pay a bit of attention if Congress would display a willingness to actually do something for once!

She must have alot to hide.

There are those who have a different analysis that she is not in contempt. I know this law professor, he taught me:

James Duane, a Fifth Amendment expert at Regent University, says Gowdy's claim was "extremely imaginative" but "mistaken."

Had this been an actual criminal trial, in an actual courtroom, and had Lerner been an actual defendant, then yes, it would not have been permissible for her to testify in her own defense and then refuse cross-examination on Fifth Amendment grounds. But a congressional hearing is not a criminal trial in two important ways, Duane tells Daily Intelligencer.

First, unlike in a trial, where she could choose to take the stand or not, Lerner had no choice but to appear before the committee. Second, in a trial there would be a justifiable concern about compromising a judge or jury by providing them with "selective, partial presentation of the facts." But Congress is merely pursuing information as part of an investigation, not making a definitive ruling on Lerner's guilt or innocence.

"When somebody is in this situation," says Duane, a Harvard Law graduate whose 2008 lecture on invoking the Fifth Amendment with police has been viewed on YouTube nearly 2.5 million times, "when they are involuntarily summoned before grand jury or before legislative body, it is well settled that they have a right to make a 'selective invocation,' as it's called, with respect to questions that they think might raise a meaningful risk of incriminating themselves."

In fact, Duane says, "even if Ms. Lerner had given answers to a few questions — five, ten, twenty questions — before she decided, 'That's where I draw the line, I'm not answering any more questions,' she would be able to do that as well." Such uses of selective invocation "happen all the time."

Excellent points, Kristin!

But it's a double edged sword, isn't it? Precisely because it is not a criminal trial, Congress can make it's own contempt rulings. See the Cornell Law article entitled Contempt of Congress

  For the sake of brevity, I have excerpted the following:

Congress has the authority to hold a person in contempt if the person's conduct or action obstructs the proceedings of Congress or, more usually, an inquiry by a committee of Congress."



"Generally, the same Constitutional rights against self-incrimination that apply in a judicial setting apply when one is testifying before Congress."


Would be interesting, right? I doubt that Democrats would vote against such an action, given the explosive nature of the matter.

The leveling of charges that simultaneously dismiss and ridicule the subject ("extremely imaginative") always causes me to desire a closer examination of the speaker.  What is Duane's agenda?  What are his political leanings?  To what organizations does he belong?  How has he contributed to political discourse in the past?

In your recounting of his statements, he changed the subject rather than supporting his conclusion.  The point that Lerner could have answered five, ten, twenty questions and then have chosen to invoke her 5th Amendment right in response to additional questions is largely irrelevant.  Her action was to summarize then conclude innocence before the Committee.

We know that wrong-doing occurred - confirmed by IRS apology.  We know that Lerner was the ultimate authority.  Let's find out who knew what and when.  That we can render judgment - guilt or innocence - upon Lerner at this point based upon what is currently known may be a stretch.  We can, however, recognize her position and the responsibility for the Agency's actions that come with her position.  As a "public servant", she should be one of the most enthusiastic in untangling the web - that she is not, speaks to her core beliefs and motivations.

Duane's arguments, as you have presented, say much more about him, his character and basis for making judgments to me than his assessments of the House Committee hearings.

Good to know that attorney Phillips "demonstrates a gross misunderstanding" of the law. Perhaps you will teach us, Mike?

The word you were looking for, Mike, is "mute", not "moot", which means "1. open to discussion or debate; debatable; doubtful: a moot point. 2. of little or no practical value or meaning; purely academic."

Trial? No, Mike

"Congress has the authority to hold a person in contempt if the person's conduct obstructs the proceedings of Congress or, more usually, an inquiry by a committee of Congress."

You would know this, Mike, if you did a little bit of research before attacking others. Perhaps you should take the "junior-high school civics class" you speak of. Or take your studies a little further....

We first of all need to realize that despite the Rule of Law, the obama administration will do what they want.  As for the fisaco yesterday, Learner clearly waived her 5th Admendment right when she gave her statement.  But, what did Issa do?  He offered to allow her to give testimony on what areas she felt safe with.  She should have been held in contempt of Congress and jailed until she saw the light, whether that involved hours or years would be her choice. 

We need our representatives to get tough on these people who sit before them with impunity and lie.  They all know they can lie and nothing will be done.  Holder was held in contempt, yet he is still sitting in his office thumbing his nose at the American people.

Congress passes the laws, but with one sentence (at the discretion of the Secretary) allows the president and secretaries of departments to intrepret that law however they wish without any oversight.  Look at the laws passed then the regulations piled on top of them by department secretaries, especially EPA. 



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