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(29,876 posts)
Tue May 21, 2013, 03:50 PM May 2013

IRS Official Lois Lerner Will Plead The 5th Amendment

Source: TPM

Lois Lerner, the official in charge of the exempt organizations division at center of the targeting scandal plaguing the Internal Revenue Service, invoked the Fifth Amendment on Tuesday, refusing to testify before a House oversight hearing this week.

“She has not committed any crime or made any misrepresentation but under the circumstances she has no choice but to take this course,” an attorney for Lerner told committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) in a letter obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

Since she intends not to answer questions, the letter requests Lerner be exempt from the hearing since her appearance would “have no purpose other than to embarrass or burden her.”

Lerner initially revealed during a Q&A session in Washington that Internal Revenue Service agents at the Cincinnati branch office improperly scrutinized conservative non-profit groups for additional reviews from 2010 to 2012. Lerner only recently disclosed that the question was planted, however.

Read more: http://livewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/entry/irs-official-lois-lerner-will-plead-5th-amendment

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IRS Official Lois Lerner Will Plead The 5th Amendment (Original Post) Purveyor May 2013 OP
Well done , Ms. Lerner AngryAmish May 2013 #1
Why is this good for us? karynnj May 2013 #8
I don't know if this John2 May 2013 #12
She would be insane not to. nt SunSeeker May 2013 #2
When a defendant pleads the 5th, the judge instructs the jury not to take that as Freddie Stubbs May 2013 #3
Technically, very few people 'plead the fifth' at their own geek tragedy May 2013 #17
When the defendant won't testify, it certainly looks shady Freddie Stubbs May 2013 #24
5...4...3...2...1 Iliyah May 2013 #4
The GOP (Grand Old Party) has no real love for the Tea Party. (n/t) spin May 2013 #5
While that may be true, the Republicans are a tool for the Ruling Elite and so is rhett o rick May 2013 #9
Jeb Bush might have been a far better president than his brother. ... spin May 2013 #18
Why it took so long for you to realize that? Just read the DONOR lists n/t golfguru May 2013 #23
What proof do you have that she's a Republican? Roland99 May 2013 #6
That is why this John2 May 2013 #14
No, there's a bio of her here Yo_Mama May 2013 #16
Issa will almost certainly demand she appear before the Inquisition jmowreader May 2013 #7
and we would be up in arms Niceguy1 May 2013 #10
I agree. Bonduel May 2013 #13
Quite true Yo_Mama May 2013 #15
who does this remind you of? dixiegrrrrl May 2013 #11
I don't recall her taking the fifth marshall May 2013 #19
Uh, couldn't they grant her immunity and compel her to testify if they wanted? Poll_Blind May 2013 #20
She is fishing for immunity grok May 2013 #21
This whole thing is an intricate, 'long con' Rovian setup ... brett_jv May 2013 #22


(59,527 posts)
8. Why is this good for us?
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:30 PM
May 2013

She is doing this for herself - not Obama or the Democratic party. We do not know anything about her political opinions. The BEST thing for Obama is if everyone involved is honest and explains why they did what they did.

With her, remember that SHE opened this story by planting a question (to her) at a law event. This could have been because she wanted to be seen as being for getting this into the open. At this point, if she were really for openness, she would be willing to take any and all questions.

I know that pleading the 5th is not suppose to make her seem guilty, but it always kind of does - and here - with her not even being present, it actually transfer that patina of guilt to the organization and indirectly to Obama.



(2,730 posts)
12. I don't know if this
Tue May 21, 2013, 05:29 PM
May 2013

woman really favors the Democratic party? Fact is she was active with the IRS beginning the Reagan Administration and was appointed during the Bush Administration. What Democratic organizations or causes has she been active in?

If there is anybody needs to be questioned then it needs to be her. I hope the DOJ's investigation include her and the Republican who was in charge of the IRS instead of the media and politicians putting the entire fault on Miller who was appointed by the Obama Administration.

I think it is very strange she had the question planted and now invoking the fifth? I've never know the IRS to do such a thing and people are suggesting the IRS only targeted the Tea party. At least the IG and Miss Lerner insinuated it. I think the IGs' own report needs to be examined and how they made that conclusion? I'm very leary of people calling for Special Counsels that needs to be a Republican less we forget Kenneth Starr. I think the DOJ is very capable of carrying out an independent Investigation because that is their job. When the DOJ brings a criminal investigation, a defendant have all the rights to contest it in court. If Miss Lerner did break any potential laws in her position, she will need a lawyer.

Congress and the IG can be political with their hearings and investigations but the DOJ can't be political. I think the most important investigation will be the DOJ involvement because you don't know what evidence it might turn up. I just wonder if Miss Lerner was influenced in any way as an IRS official? What she did was very unusual in my opinion for the IRS. Most of the time you have to prove things to the IRS to get any admissions of guilt on their part.

Freddie Stubbs

(29,853 posts)
3. When a defendant pleads the 5th, the judge instructs the jury not to take that as
Tue May 21, 2013, 03:58 PM
May 2013

an admission of guilt. At least that is what is supposed to happen in a court of law.

In the court of public opinion, there is no judge to give instructions to the jury.


geek tragedy

(68,868 posts)
17. Technically, very few people 'plead the fifth' at their own
Tue May 21, 2013, 06:18 PM
May 2013


Rather, they just don't testify and judge instructs the jury not to read anything into that.

If they do decide to testify on their own behalf, they're unable to plead the fifth anymore.


(25,111 posts)
4. 5...4...3...2...1
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:00 PM
May 2013

blast off - blame Pres O!

I wish the corporate media would just verify that progressive non-profit groups were targeted also.

Ms. Lerner is a GOPer alongwith her hubby.


rhett o rick

(55,981 posts)
9. While that may be true, the Republicans are a tool for the Ruling Elite and so is
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:43 PM
May 2013

the Tea Party. I think the Tea Party functions much like the Brown Shirts did for Hitler. They will be dealt with when they have done their dirty work. If Jeb Bush rides in on his fake white horse, he will win back many of the conservatives that left the party by dealing harshly with the Tea Party.


(17,493 posts)
18. Jeb Bush might have been a far better president than his brother. ...
Tue May 21, 2013, 06:29 PM
May 2013

However I think our nation has seen enough Bushes.

I hate to say this but I suspect that both parties are tools for the ruling elite. The name of the game in Washington is donations and the rich and the large corporations have far more money to donate and therefore far more clout than the middle and poor classes.

Of course the Democratic Party does promote human and civil rights more than the Republican Party. Democrats also support measures to improve our environment which Republicans resist.

One reason that I have voted for Democrats for years is that the party has been interested in improving health care. I can't yet say that I am totally satisfied with Obama Care but I do feel that it will eventually prove to be a vast improvement of what we had before.


(53,342 posts)
6. What proof do you have that she's a Republican?
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:14 PM
May 2013

Or is it just inference?

I've not found much, if anything, on her other than she's been w/the IRS for about 30yrs



(2,730 posts)
14. That is why this
Tue May 21, 2013, 05:46 PM
May 2013

woman needs to be investigated or interrogated. Anybody can call themselves a Democrat in name only just for appearance. Both sides claim she is A political. That remains to be seen. The Democratic Party has a lot of fake Democrats. Not so much in the Republican Party though.


(8,303 posts)
16. No, there's a bio of her here
Tue May 21, 2013, 06:17 PM
May 2013

Down at the bottom. According to that, she started at the DOJ, moved to the FEC and didn't show up at the IRS until 2001.

She is a lawyer and she should have known that this wasn't legal.


(50,645 posts)
7. Issa will almost certainly demand she appear before the Inquisition
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:18 PM
May 2013

Tomas de Issa is rubbing his hands together with glee at the thought of forcing an IRS officer to have to say "Congressman, I plead the Fifth" about six hundred times as his panel gets more and more abrasive with her. This footage will run on every TV station and on every Repuke's campaign commercials for the next...oh, say ten years.

Here's reality: this scrutiny SHOULD have been done across the board to every 501(C)(4) application, but thanks to our Republicans there's no money. And the only reason it's "improper" is that it happened to people Republicans like. If we had a Republican in the White House and the IRS was caught crawling through Democratic groups, the entire RW blogosphere and the entire conservative press would be cheering.


(2,467 posts)
10. and we would be up in arms
Tue May 21, 2013, 04:53 PM
May 2013

calling for heads to roll in investigations and impeachment if it had happened to us.


(8,303 posts)
15. Quite true
Tue May 21, 2013, 06:11 PM
May 2013

Obviously this is not going to go away quickly.

Lerner had apparently just been in speaking to Congress a couple of days before, so I'm sure she'll face questions as to why she said nothing then.


(60,010 posts)
11. who does this remind you of?
Tue May 21, 2013, 05:28 PM
May 2013

Remember Shrub's Lurita Doan, head of the General Services Administration, who was subpoenaed by Congress after she violated the Hatch Act by asking her GSA political appointees how they could "help our candidates" win the next election, then ducked and dodged all questions and tried to blame everybody else for the problem?
and, oh, yeah, she called the Inspector Generals "bureaucratic terrorists.”

I have no objections to Lerner being subjected to a little embarrassment.


(23,864 posts)
20. Uh, couldn't they grant her immunity and compel her to testify if they wanted?
Tue May 21, 2013, 06:57 PM
May 2013

This sort of thing can play out a couple of different ways.




(550 posts)
21. She is fishing for immunity
Tue May 21, 2013, 08:07 PM
May 2013

Which generally means she has something to offer or knows something she feels a need to be compelled to before doing so.

Count on republicans chomping at the bit to offer immunity, and democrats trying to deny it.

Still, i don't understand what should could have done illegally. doesn't seem she would have been in the loop when the incidents happened.

could it be she PLANNED on this happening all along from the moment she got that question planted. and make it a news story that could not be ignored.


(1,245 posts)
22. This whole thing is an intricate, 'long con' Rovian setup ...
Tue May 21, 2013, 09:10 PM
May 2013

I don't buy for ONE SECOND that this 'scandal' has anything remotely to do with Obama or the Dems trying to harm their 'political enemies' by denying them NP status. Obama is getting 'Dan Rather'd here.

I think Lois has been working for ROVE. And the people at the IRS would did this targeting were also working for ROVE.

IOW, this whole thing is political theater. Rove told her to plead the Fifth to try to make Obama look bad/guilty, and so she won't have to be grilled by Dems at the hearing. That's right, I think she's going to take the 5th because the people running this scam are actually afraid of the Democrat's questions, not the GOP's questions.

I think the Dems in the Congress are soon going to start figuring out exactly what's actually happened here. The IG admitting under oath the Issa ordered this probe (and that he's been getting updated on it all along) are enough to show ME that the reality of things here are a far cry from the way they're actually being reported on, and the congressional Dems aren't idiots. They're going to put 2+2 together here, in part because they know what a snake Issa really is!

And I'm also guessing that the DoJ is right now investigating whether or not this whole thing was a conspiracy to make sure the IRS won't scrutinize these groups anymore .. in particular, Crossroad's GPS's application for non-profit status ... and to try to tarnish Obama.

I'd also bet any amount there's no actual law on the books that says that the IRS can't do exactly what they (apparently) did. IOW, I don't believe she has any legit reason to 'plead the Fifth', because I don't believe there's anything she can possibly be 'charged' with.

If there WAS any 'law' against the IRS doing what it did, the absolute most key question would be ... was the RATIO of 'addt'l reviews' HIGHER for TP groups than it mathematically should have been

Notice, though, that the media still to this day has not informed us whether the number of additional reviews ordered against Tea-Party groups shows 'bias' to a statistically significant degree. Nor is there any mention of the importance of this ratio, and certainly no reportage on what the ratio actually WAS.

Instead you have to find little blurbs of congressional testimony they (maybe) throw in their articles to even find out what the count of the scrutinized teabag groups vs the total # of scrutinized groups was.

Lastly, have you noticed that the MSM won't ever tell us the PERCENT of Teabagger groups that actually got addt'l review? Know why? Because that number, along w/the numbers we already know, would allow people with a modicum of stats knowledge to determine for themselves whether the numbers necessarily suggest 'bias'.

I'm telling ya, this whole thing is bullshit, man, and stinks to high heaven of Rovian trickery, along with MSM collusion.

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