Friday, May 24, 2013

Radical Conservative Congressman Darrell Issa Wants to Force Testimony From Lois Lerner in IRS Investigation

“We Have Ways of Making You Talk” He Did Not Say

Conservatives Profess Love of Liberty – And Want to Take It Away

We admit we were confused when it was reported that Lois Lerner, who is involved in the IRS sortof scandal decided to invoke the fifth amendment against self- incrimination in a House hearing.  The occasion was a hearing held by the Grand Inquisitor of the Congress, Darrell Issa, a man who must adore Torquemada and fervently wish that he, Mr. Issa could torture people and make them confess.

Lerner shocked the committee room in the opening moments of Wednesday’s hearing by delivering an opening statement denying any wrongdoing and professing pride in her government service.

“I have not done anything wrong,” said Lerner, who triggered the IRS scandal on May 10 by acknowledging that the agency had singled out conservative groups applying for tax exemptions. “I have not broken any laws. I have not violated any IRS rules or regulations, and I have not provided false information to this or any other committee.”

Beyond that, she refused to answer the committee’s questions, immediately triggering a debate among panel members over whether she had just voided her Fifth Amendment rights.

Now as we understand the fifth amendment is used in criminal cases, but why it should be necessary to invoke it before a Congressional Committee is something we don’t understand.  Every American should have the right to simply say to Congress “No, I do not have to answer your questions and I will not answer your questions.  You have no right, unless I consent, to ask me questions.”

See that’s what freedom is all about, that the Congress cannot question you and expect answers if you don’t want to answer.  So once again we have Conservatives who ardently love freedom working to deny it to people.  Not new or unexpected, just sad.

Now we do understand that if a person is called before a grand jury and starts to answer questions instead of remaining silent than that person has waived their right to remain silent.  But Congress is not a grand jury, in fact if one is a strict constructionist like Republicans claim to be, it is hard if not impossible to find where the Constitution gives the Congress the right to compel testimony.

Hey Conservatives - Here It Is

A question is now out there as to whether or not Ms. Lerner lost her right to remain silent by making an opening statement.  The answer of course is no, these are inalienable rights, just check the Declaration of Independence, something Republicans apparently read but do not understand.

Of course the bigger question here is why is Ms. Lerner still in her job?

[Update:  She has been placed on temporary leave, something everyone hopes will soon be made permanent.]

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