Lois Lerner, the former IRS official at the center of the agency’s targeting scandal, was back on Capitol Hill this morning. Last year, Lerner invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, and she took a similar stance this morning – refusing to answer any questions regarding her role in the scandal. The hearing went straight downhill from there.
Lerner responded to each of House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa’s (R-CA) questions by invoking the Fifth Amendment, which prompted Issa to proclaim there was “no point going forward” with the session. He then gaveled out the hearing.
That action incensed Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), who proceeded to lash out, accusing Issa of running a “one-sided investigation” of the IRS’ inappropriate targeting of conservative groups. Issa responded by turning off Cummings’ microphone and closing up shop.
Check out the incident unfold below:
On radio this morning, Glenn, Pat and, Stu debated whether there would be any benefit in granting Lerner immunity so at least some information could be gleaned. Pat saw no harm in action, but Glenn wasn’t so sure.
“She’s not the fish we’re trying to fry, you know? Give her immunity. It’s been so long now. And every time, if you don’t give her immunity, she’s just going to keep doing this,” Pat agued. “So what have you got to lose? Give her immunity. See if she’ll testify. See if she’ll tell us what really happened here. And let’s move on. Let’s get to the bottom of it.”
But would Lerner actually spill any secrets even if she couldn’t incriminate herself? In Glenn’s opinion, the woman really believes she did nothing wrong, and she probably wouldn’t testify regardless.
“She didn’t think she did anything wrong. But she knows she’s doing stuff that’s borderline. Somebody gives you immunity. Do you testify,” Glenn asked. “I think these guys are so arrogant, so out of control.”
Front page image courtesy of the AP