Not if you've been reading OpEdNews.com
On Thursday, in my article, based upon my brief study of some of the emails from the justice department dump, Looking For Another Rose Mary Woods, I suggested two people who looked ripe for questioning by congress.
As Borat would say, "High Five."
You only claim the fifth if you've broken the law and don't want to incriminate yourself.
It is a sign of media bias that the MSM is not reporting in their headlines that Goodling wasn't just an aide. She's an attorney who was liaison between the Justice department and the whitehouse-- the official go-between. Her refusal to testify is most likely under the direction of George W. Bush. Her testimony would surely relate to her communications she mediated between the Whitehouse and the Justice Department. Congress should be subpoenaing her private email correspondences. They should be checking to see if she created any yahoo, msn, gmail, aol or other easily secret acounts-- and see if any emails confirming signups for new email identities were sent from any of those services to her known email addresses.
Bloomberg.com reports that Goodling's attorney sent a letter to congress.
"She will refuse to be interviewed by committee lawyers and decline an invitation to testify at a public hearing, said attorney John M. Dowd, citing the ''legally perilous'' environment of congressional probes.
"....The hostile and questionable environment in the present congressional proceedings is at best ambiguous; more accurately the environment can be described as legally perilous for Ms. Goodling,'' Dowd said in a letter to Senator Patrick Leahy, the Vermont Democrat who chairs the panel. ''The potential for legal jeopardy for Ms. Goodling even from her most truthful and accurate testimony under these circumstances is very real."
Senator Leahy, bloomberg.com reported, said,
"The American people are left to wonder what conduct is at the base of Ms. Goodling's concern that she may incriminate herself in connection with criminal charges if she appears before the committee under oath."
...In response to Leahy's statement, Dowd said the chairman "ignores the very basis on which Goodling has asserted her constitutional right." Dowd said, "The Fifth Amendment protects innocent persons who might otherwise be ensnared by ambiguous circumstances as much as it protects those who may have done something wrong."
I don't think this ploy by Dowd will stand. Goodling's attorney is reaching way too broadly at using the fifth amendment. Congress won't tolerate it. At the least, she'll have to appear and answer some basic questions. At worst (or best, depending how you look at it,) she'll be charged with contempt of congress.
The fact is, she is a small fish in this pool. It is likely that the congress will grant her immunity. Then she'll have to talk-- the sooner the better.
When they get her in the hearing, one of the first questions should be, "Did anyone in the whitehouse directly or indirectly advise you or instruct you to claim your fifth amendment rights?"
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