Second look at immunity for Lerner?

posted at 11:01 am on May 11, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

I’ve been opposed to the idea of offering any sort of immunity to Lois Lerner since this entire brouhaha erupted, and I also opposed the idea of recognizing her taking the 5th in a situation where she was not on trial, not charged with any crime and innocent of any wrongdoing by her own statement under oath. Thus far, however, this hasn’t proven to be a particularly practical position in terms of getting to the bottom of things. Andrew McCarthy has an essay out this weekend in which he argues that it may be long past time to offer Lerner immunity for any of her previous actions in the greater interest of fixing a broken system.

In this week’s episode of the Capitol Hill soap opera, Lois Lerner, the apparatchik at the center of the IRS jihad against conservative groups, was at long, long last held in contempt of Congress. Amid the farce, the House’s IRS probe is floundering.

Ironically, this happens just as the chamber’s separate probe of the Benghazi massacre has been given a chance to succeed. That is because House speaker John Boehner, after over a year of delay, has finally agreed to appoint a “select committee” to investigate Benghazi. Congress has no constitutional authority to enforce the laws it writes, a power our system vests solely in the executive branch. But a select committee, with a mission to find out what happened — as opposed to conducting oversight through the prism of some committee’s narrow subject-matter jurisdiction (judiciary, budget, education, reform, etc.) — is the closest legislative analogue to a grand jury.

McCarthy offers praise for the too long delayed select committee on Benghazi and notes that – if handled properly – it can achieve what endless rounds of blustering on the floor of the lower chamber and cable news talking head gab festivals will not. But the author also recognizes the unsatisfying taste of simply handing Lerner a free pass. In light of that, he offers consolation on how the big picture is more important than short term satisfaction.

Sometimes, behavior is heinous but essentially private — i.e., of interest mainly to the people directly affected by the misconduct. In such cases, the priority is to prosecute and punish the wrongdoers, so you obviously resist granting immunity to a culpable party.

In other situations, reprehensible behavior affects the public at large. This is almost always the case when government power has been abused: The gravity of the misconduct transcends the injury to the private parties directly affected. It portends rampant violation of fundamental rights and undermines our trust in faithful execution of the laws. In such circumstances, it is imperative to achieve political accountability and a complete record of what went wrong so that any necessary policy changes can be made. Holding wrongdoers criminally culpable is secondary.

The shorter translation of what McCarthy is trying to convey here is that no matter how satisfying it might be to see Lerner doing an orange clad, belly chained perp walk out of the chambers, the desire for such an outcome is less important that finding out where the larger system broke down in the first place. It is even more important to identify those culpable at the highest levels, not just in the office where the levers of power were being fiddled.

While unsatisfying, as I said above, the logic of this is difficult to refute. But it only works if one critical assumption is valid. Would Lois Lerner go for it and spill the beans under oath with a ticket to full immunity tucked in her purse? In order for that to be true it would rely on her believing that she remains in potential future jeopardy. The investigation has stalled. She’s no doubt received more than a few messages from her own team telling her to stand strong and assuring her that this won’t go anywhere as long as everyone sticks to their story. She would be sacrificing her own reputation, burning all of her allied bridges and ending her public life to testify against her own bosses. That’s a lot to overcome, particularly if she’s feeling like the bulk of the storm has already passed and left her still standing.


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Comment pages: 1 2

She needs to do hard time…

OmahaConservative on May 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM

The problem here is, if Lois Lerner is granted Immunity, she will admit it was all her, nobody asked her to do it, and then it becomes an investigative cul-de-sac.

libfreesMom on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Thus far, however, this hasn’t proven to be a particularly practical position in terms of getting to the bottom of things.

So what? If the only “practical” way of getting to the bottom of things is to guarantee that the criminal walks, then it’s a pointless exercise.

Stoic Patriot on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Immunity would be a colossal mistake. She will assume all blame and cover up for the Spite House and they will get no information at all.

What they should do is clap her in irons in the Capitol Jail and leave her there until she testifies.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:11 AM

OmahaConservative on May 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM

along with the folks above her….

cmsinaz on May 11, 2014 at 11:11 AM

She needs to do hard time…

OmahaConservative on May 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Exactly. She needs to do jail time if for her crimes. She needs to serve as an example to the bureaucracy that they WILL be put in prison for acting as political hacks instead of servants of the People.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:13 AM

libfreesMom on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:11 AM

+1

cmsinaz on May 11, 2014 at 11:13 AM

The problem here is, if Lois Lerner is granted Immunity, she will admit it was all her, nobody asked her to do it, and then it becomes an investigative cul-de-sac.

libfreesMom on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

but, iirc, if proven that she lied during any of it everything she then stated can be used against her and immunity is nulled.

I have mixed feelings about this really.

dmacleo on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

It is even more important to identify those culpable at the highest levels, not just in the office where the levers of power were being fiddled.

That assumes she was given marching orders by higher levels. More likely: they knew her disposition and let her have at it. The only way she should get immunity is for incriminating evidence resulting in jail time for higher ups. The only higher up worth mentioning is Obama.

Fenris on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

She needs to do hard time…

OmahaConservative on May 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM

I want to get at the truth, if immunity is what it takes. But immunity to Lerner must go together with nabbing someone higher up at the White House. If it goes no further than Lerner, and she gets a free pass … then no one gets punished.

LashRambo on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Wanting to see her do time is the low hanging fruit.

Face it, she isn’t as smart as Oliver North. She is the face of one scandal in an administration run amok.

She won’t do time, 0bama will see to that.

cozmo on May 11, 2014 at 11:15 AM

but, iirc, if proven that she lied during any of it everything she then stated can be used against her and immunity is nulled.

I have mixed feelings about this really.

dmacleo on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

And how are you going to ever disprove a statement of “It was all me”?

Stoic Patriot on May 11, 2014 at 11:15 AM

And how are you going to ever disprove a statement of “It was all me”?

Stoic Patriot on May 11, 2014 at 11:15 AM

well theres the rub, and why this is not an easy decision.

dmacleo on May 11, 2014 at 11:17 AM

You could give her immunity but I doubt she will say anything anyway which is probably why they haven’t done it. She has more to lose than her career if she rats on the higher ups. They would have to put her in witness protection. Too bad about that terrible accident. The corruption is too deep and wide spread.

crankyoldlady on May 11, 2014 at 11:17 AM

…no…No!…NO!

KOOLAID2 on May 11, 2014 at 11:18 AM

The smart play here would be to offer immunity to people who worked with and under Lerner to testify as to Lerner’s crimes. You don’t give immunity to Lerner, she’s one of the Big Fish in this scandal and deserves REAL prison time for her actions. Even if Obama directly gave her orders to do what she did, he won’t be impeached over it (too gutless). The reality is that if anyone gave Lerner the order it would have been Jarret.

Lerner used the IRS to go after citizens with contrary POLITICAL views to the President. That is NOT ALLOWED in a Republic and cannot go unpunished. She should get 20 years at least. At most any testimony deal should be a 5 year reduction in sentence, not walking free.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:18 AM

That assumes she was given marching orders by higher levels. More likely: they knew her disposition and let her have at it. The only way she should get immunity is for incriminating evidence resulting in jail time for higher ups. The only higher up worth mentioning is Obama.

Fenris on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

This.

Obama put her in that position in the IRS because this is exactly how she behaved when she worked for the FEC. They didn’t have to tell her to go after the TEA Party after what they did in 2010. There is a good chance Lerner IS the big fish in this crime, and to give her immunity would be to ensure no one got punished for what is arguably the WORST CRIME ever committed by the Federal Government against citizens.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:21 AM

If she’s offered immunity, why would she not cop to orchestrating the whole mess? It would protect the ideology, the administration, and the IRS, and she’d face no consequences. In fact, it would probably make her more valuable to libs.

BKeyser on May 11, 2014 at 11:25 AM

I thought Mr. McCarthy might be a good hire for the committee but now I have changed my mine. This is not Ms. Lerner’s first rodeo and she may be taking orders from the Democrat Party rather than this White House specifically. But it is a behavior we are going to see used over and over again until somebody goes to jail.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 11:25 AM

She needs to do hard time…

OmahaConservative on May 11, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Exactly. She needs to do jail time if for her crimes. She needs to serve as an example to the bureaucracy that they WILL be put in prison for acting as political hacks instead of servants of the People.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:13 AM

Couldn’t agree more. The bureaucrats, the slimy toads sucking at the national teat, need to be taught a lesson. They MUST NOT get involved in politics. They are paid handsomely for shuffling papers and being unresponsive and unaccountable – for doing nothing but building their petty empires. When they come after the citizenry, they should get it good and hard.

The Nuremberg defense ( “Befehl ist Befehl”) won’t cut it – a certain bit of leniency might be OK if she spills the beans but she should be punished in some way even so. If she is made an example of …. Damn Democratic hacks.

These so-called elites, the ones that the moron Democrats claim need to have such high salaries because “their jobs require so much training and education”, need to be taught a lesson. DC is the only place where salaries are goring at a monstrous speed and this sort of slime-ball is what we are paying for?

Good grief.

Chuck Ef on May 11, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Martha Stewart goes to jail, but some think these people shouldn’t even be investigated?? Really?

Mimzey on May 11, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Growing, not goring ^ but maybe that too.

Got too pissed off….

Chuck Ef on May 11, 2014 at 11:28 AM

She has to be prosecuted by DOJ, which is headed by another person that got charged with contempt of Congress.

IOW, there is no way in Hell that this woman is gonna get charged with anything by Eric Holder’s DOJ.

And Republicans suck at managing independent investigators (recalling the halcyon days of Ken Starr).

We are so screwed.

Wanderlust on May 11, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Immunity would be a colossal mistake. She will assume all blame and cover up for the Spite House and they will get no information at all.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:11 AM

This. No immunity!

BigGator5 on May 11, 2014 at 11:29 AM

If she’s offered immunity, why would she not cop to orchestrating the whole mess? It would protect the ideology, the administration, and the IRS, and she’d face no consequences. In fact, it would probably make her more valuable to libs.

BKeyser on May 11, 2014 at 11:25 AM

See above. Lerner LIKELY DID orchestrate the whole mess. Not without help within the IRS and a wink and a nod from The Regime, but I doubt hard evidence exists of that.

Why not offer immunity to people who worked with Lerner, who got their hands dirty in this crime, who TOOK ORDERS from her?

Lois Lerner MUST go to prison. She MUST lose her pension, funded by the very taxpayers she misused federal power against. What Lerner and the IRS did is UNACCEPTABLE and must be punished so severely it cows mid level political agenda bureaucrats in ALL the other agencies (BLM, EPA, etc…) If these people knew for certain that misusing their authority WILL result in prison time, loss of job and pension, most will think twice before doing it.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:30 AM

She has to be prosecuted by DOJ, which is headed by another person that got charged with contempt of Congress.

IOW, there is no way in Hell that this woman is gonna get charged with anything by Eric Holder’s DOJ.

And Republicans suck at managing independent investigators (recalling the halcyon days of Ken Starr).

We are so screwed.

Wanderlust on May 11, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Eric Holder isn’t the only prosecutor in the United States.

Every single person Lois Lerner’s IRS committed criminal acts against are citizens of various states. It falls under the authority, indeed, the DUTY of each of these State AG’s to prosecute both Lerner AND the IRS for these crimes. And if Holder and the Federal courts interfere, charge THEM with obstruction of justice.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:32 AM

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:30 AM

Agreed on all points.

BKeyser on May 11, 2014 at 11:32 AM

I am as outraged as anyone by this witch, as I have endured both corporate and personal audits for the last 3 years for (I believe) my personal support of a tea party congressional candidate (who won) and I am fed up with it. But, we all know that the DOJ will never support the prosecution of these charges, and this is going nowhere.

I say better to get her to admit that the targeting actually took place even if she falls on her own sword to take the left’s narrative away and to make sure it has stopped before the midterms and the 2016 presidential.

Immunize her.

Quaere Verum on May 11, 2014 at 11:36 AM

It is even more important to identify those culpable at the highest levels, not just in the office where the levers of power were being fiddled.

That assumes she was given marching orders by higher levels. More likely: they knew her disposition and let her have at it. The only way she should get immunity is for incriminating evidence resulting in jail time for higher ups. The only higher up worth mentioning is Obama.

Fenris on May 11, 2014 at 11:14 AM

If you look at the letter from the House Ways and Means Committe from April 9 summarizing the situation, it looks like Lerner directed it. Why would you give the top dog immunity?

talkingpoints on May 11, 2014 at 11:39 AM

We have the FBI, CIA, NSA and probably other investigative agencies that are black programs and we can’t find out what happened when Lois Lerner sicced the IRS on conservatives unless we give this lying criminal a get out of jail free card?

Yup. That describes what’s wrong with the country perfectly.

vityas on May 11, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Jail Lerner!!!!!! Boehner said this morning that he won’t take advantage of the option to arrest her himself because it’s never been done before. Jackazz.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 11:40 AM

Too bad we’ve stopped the use of waterboarding. That’s the only way to get her to tell the truth.

merlich on May 11, 2014 at 11:44 AM

talkingpoints on May 11, 2014 at 11:39 AM

I assume, to see if she was told to initiate the practices from either the White House or the DNC. It seems to me that they have proof that Democrat members of Congress asked for it. You could not convince me that Ms. Lerner’s blueprint was not used by the prosecutors in Wisconsin and their John Doe subpenas.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 11:44 AM

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Agree, but the fundamental problem isn’t corruption. The corrupt, like the poor, we will always have with us. The problem is the scope and power of the bureaucrats. And it’s only going to get worse.

Fenris on May 11, 2014 at 11:47 AM

The parrot chick?

rottenrobbie on May 11, 2014 at 11:51 AM

The problem here is, if Lois Lerner is granted Immunity, she will admit it was all her, nobody asked her to do it, and then it becomes an investigative cul-de-sac.

libfreesMom on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Yup. It should only be conditional immunity, conditional on her rolling over on a big fish and provides written testimony beforehand. If she reneges, the immunity deal is off.

whatcat on May 11, 2014 at 11:54 AM

ssume, to see if she was told to initiate the practices from either the White House or the DNC. It seems to me that they have proof that Democrat members of Congress asked for it. You could not convince me that Ms. Lerner’s blueprint was not used by the prosecutors in Wisconsin and their John Doe subpenas. Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 11:44 AM

Yep. Cummings specifically.

Granted she’s a prog activist and didn’t need to be told, but she was.

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 11:55 AM

I vote for immunity for this weasel but under the caveat that should any e-mails or other IRS documents turn up that refute her testimony then the immunity would be revoked and criminal charges would be filed. If she tries to take the fall for higher ups because of immunity and then is discovered to be lying then her wardrobe will be orange for the future.

inspectorudy on May 11, 2014 at 11:55 AM

We need to see the non-redacted emails the IRS has now committed to turning over to Congress (Did Judicial Watch ask for these, too?) Then we’ll have a better idea of the chain of communications and if it did go up to the WH chief counsel or above. So after that you give her immunity and if she lies you prosecute. The DOJ knows she’s guilty and they probably inspired the IRS to cough up the emails right after LoL was held in contempt.

gracie on May 11, 2014 at 12:02 PM

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 11:55 AM

It’s true she may have initiated all of this on her own but she sent the information somewhere. Especially if that 10% number of audited Tea Party donors turns out to be accurate. If members of Congress can get in trouble for using their staff for election purposes, civil servants shouldn’t get a pass for using government organizations to make partisan moves. I must be overreacting to this but it makes me hotter than a three dollar pistol every time I think of them getting away with it.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:05 PM

The DOJ knows she’s guilty and they probably inspired the IRS to cough up the emails right after LoL was held in contempt. gracie on May 11, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Nope. They were helping her. Coniving to PROSECUTE Tea Party groups.

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:06 PM

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 11:59 AM

who could forget Elijah with the omelet all over his face when Issa sent him his reminder. But there are many more beauties in the Senate like Schumer and Levin and I bet a number of Republican Tea Party haters…maybe McCain and McConnell to name a few. This is going to smell like elephant dung when it’s done.

gracie on May 11, 2014 at 12:08 PM

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:02 PM

But David Brock of Media Matters can make a keynote speech at a Democrat fundraiser. I could just scream.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:09 PM

The GOP yawns…

d1carter on May 11, 2014 at 12:09 PM

I can tell you exactly where the system broke down. Giving Lois Lerner immunity would just be a continuation of the reason for the break down.

How many people has our government held accountable in government for blatantly illegal behavior? Pretty close to none. No one is held to account and given the punishment they deserve, thus it is like any other law that is not enforced. It is broken with impunity by those who have no moral or ethical code inside themselves.

If you want to make things better in this nation. Prosecute and jail Lerner, Holder and everyone under them that did illegal things. Hold them to the letter and heart of the law. Make them examples of what other government employees can expect when they cross the line.

astonerii on May 11, 2014 at 12:12 PM

astonerii on May 11, 2014 at 12:12 PM

She should have been fired when she was at the FEC.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:15 PM

The GOP yawns… d1carter on May 11, 2014 at 12:09 PM

“The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

GOPe wants the Tea Party gone, too.

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:15 PM

There is a good chance Lerner IS the big fish in this crime, and to give her immunity would be to ensure no one got punished for what is arguably the WORST CRIME ever committed by the Federal Government against citizens.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 11:21 AM

WORST CRIME… so far. As long as this one goes unpunished, they will only have to keep ratcheting up the “worst crime” threshold to keep protecting greater criminals until it all breaks down.

Harbingeing on May 11, 2014 at 12:18 PM

Boehner: The ball is in Eric Holder’s court….LOL

d1carter on May 11, 2014 at 12:19 PM

And the DOJ,,,

http://m.townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2014/04/16/breaking-new-emails-show-lois-lerner-contacted-doj-about-prosecuting-tax-exempt-groups-n1825292

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:02 PM

what did the doj say back or did they initiate this discussion? we need all her emails even her private ones because she used another name in many of her emails. it’s also very convenient for LoL to be married to tax attorney Michael Miles who works for a big “tight with the democrats firm” in Atlanta and DC.

gracie on May 11, 2014 at 12:20 PM

Before being granted immunity, doesn’t she have to tell them what she will say?

Techster64 on May 11, 2014 at 12:22 PM

,lol,, that was cooincidence…

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:24 PM

The party of stupid is weak, feckless, leaderless and the laughing stock of the democrats. Thanks to the weeper of the house and the morons in OH, 8th. You people are hurting the entire country……….

ultracon on May 11, 2014 at 12:25 PM

Meet Micheal Miles,, obamaite. Her husband.

http://dailycaller.com/2013/05/16/embattled-irs-official-lois-lerners-husbands-law-firm-hosted-an-obama-campaign-organizing-meeting/

wolly4321 on May 11, 2014 at 12:21 PM

How……..cozy…………

VegasRick on May 11, 2014 at 12:26 PM

Immunity only under the condition that she can ‘give up’ somebody higher than herself.

Otherwise… The Graybar Hotel.

trigon on May 11, 2014 at 12:31 PM

I do not see the point in offering her immunity. Is the statute of limitations up as soon as a Republican is elected President?

astonerii on May 11, 2014 at 12:35 PM

Lerner would love this. She gets immunity, and tells everyone that she was the instigator, the top of the chain, and it was all her fault. Or she’s held in contempt, and Obama pardons here. She and the Donks can’t lose either way.

No one will ever pay for the IRS systematically targeting the members of only one party during an election year. And because everyone is about to get away with it, it will soon become SOP, because Obama’s “phony scandal” narrative will take permanent hold once the Republicans end up empty-handed at the end of this.

We do not live under a government that even pretends to live by its own rules anymore. And it will get much worse.

Rusty Nail on May 11, 2014 at 12:37 PM

If it is given and she says ‘it was all me’ then she must be asked to explain why it is still going on.

Her problem is that it isn’t all her, or even all her office at the IRS. The ongoing problems at the IRS regarding the status of conservative and Tea Party organizations isn’t all attributable to one person, no matter how much she was a willing pawn she is part of a larger systemic problem at the IRS.

What should be offered her is not just immunity, but witness protection against retaliation. Now that would be a fun time.

ajacksonian on May 11, 2014 at 12:43 PM

astonerii on May 11, 2014 at 12:35 PM

Apparently they will have to renew the contempt charge with each new Congress. I don’t see these spineless idiots bothering after this year, let alone until we get a new DOJ.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:48 PM

If the committee or any republican or conservative agrees to give her immunity, that is a platform in which to run any and all republicans and conservatives off the seat they were elected too.

She did the crime, under a certain influence, she needs to do the time and sign of the individual(s) who asked her to do it. Period.

upinak on May 11, 2014 at 12:49 PM

“Promise me you’ll never run for office again, and we’ll drop the case.”

Ask Al Salvi if she should get immunity.

Fallon on May 11, 2014 at 12:49 PM

ajacksonian on May 11, 2014 at 12:43 PM

I bet she wouldn’t take it. I think she thinks she has done the country a great service.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:49 PM

Apparently they will have to renew the contempt charge with each new Congress. I don’t see these spineless idiots bothering after this year, let alone until we get a new DOJ.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:48 PM

And she would probably get pardoned by the POS.

upinak on May 11, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Let’s not forget, Colleen Kelley is the link into the White House:

Obama Met With IRS Union Boss Day Before Tea Party Targeting Began

She should be on the hot seat as much as Lerner.

slickwillie2001 on May 11, 2014 at 1:00 PM

What is being done to address the auditing of conservatives? And the open favoritism by the IRS, EPA, FEC, for liberal donors?

pat on May 11, 2014 at 1:06 PM

Lois Lerner had the knowledge, she got the go ahead from the White House. It needs to be proven.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 1:07 PM

pat on May 11, 2014 at 1:06 PM

My guess will be more of the same for two more years. Even if the Republicans take all of Congress, this won’t stop.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 1:08 PM

pat on May 11, 2014 at 1:06 PM

What’s being done? They’re stepping it up, that’s what.

Rusty Nail on May 11, 2014 at 1:10 PM

Lerner contempt of Congress!!!!

Bwahahahahahaha

Congress would have to improve its behavior by at least 300% to reach even the lowest levels to which thoughtful and decent men and women might begin to apply the standard of contempt.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on May 11, 2014 at 1:22 PM

J A I L

TX-96 on May 11, 2014 at 1:24 PM

donabernathy on May 11, 2014 at 1:22 PM

Well if we had a real Attorney General wouldn’t have to rely on Congress.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 1:24 PM

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We currently have nearly 25,000 contributors but we NEED to grow this number. Please encourage your family and friends to give just $1 and add their name – their vote to the growing army of people who are demanding that the censorship stops now.

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Dolce Far Niente on May 11, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Dolce Far Niente on May 11, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Have they got enough yet to hire Anthony Hopkins to play Gosnell?

slickwillie2001 on May 11, 2014 at 1:40 PM

The GOP leadership can’t give her immunity until after her testimony would help Tea Party candidates take out establishment candidates.

Once the primary elections are all decided, the GOPe can safely start unraveling the scandal to help them win the general elections in November. So expect Lerner to get immunity some time in June.

It’s all quite logical.

fadetogray on May 11, 2014 at 1:43 PM

I’m going to agree with the no-immunity side. Basically, immunity is only valuable if you can believe that the person will testify truthfully once they have it. We have no indication that she will have any incentive or desire to do so.

It will be far harder to prove whether she has perjured herself is she is granted it, and then lies under oath.

Voyager on May 11, 2014 at 1:49 PM

slickwillie2001 on May 11, 2014 at 1:40 PM

In black-face? Something tells me that wouldn’t go over so well.

Wait, Robert Downey Jr. just called to tell me I’m wrong, so…

Rusty Nail on May 11, 2014 at 1:52 PM

I bet she wouldn’t take it. I think she thinks she has done the country a great service.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:49 PM

She probably does at that.

However if she worked with others and there is any little doubt in her mind, then witness protection when done by Congress is something usually reserved for those testifying against organized crime.

So even if she thinks she has done a great thing (although taking the 5th points against that) if there are others involved and doing something wrong and Congress is already on their trail, then taking witness protection is a great way to avoid all of that by blabbing. Even if you did no wrong in your own eyes, you tell about EVERYONE who helped you, agreed with you or in any other way furthered what you did.

Because if she takes immunity and doesn’t do the extra step and a RICO case starts up, she is toast because of implication by others.

Her problem is that she did not act alone, did have authorization and even if she thinks everything is just fine, she just might suspect that someone is making her the scapegoat or going to pull her down with them.

When viewed in that light she might start to suspect that Congress already has one good witness, and is now looking for a second. Would you rather be testifying against others in a RICO case and have witness protection, or find yourself on the stand even if you believe you are innocent?

ajacksonian on May 11, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Boner needs to be thrown in jail for being a traitor to this country. That’s the only thing that explains his repeated bending over and doing whatever the Democrats want him to do. The leadership of the GOP in both the House and Senate need to be prosecuted for fraud by claiming to be Republicans.

flytier on May 11, 2014 at 2:05 PM

WORST CRIME… so far. As long as this one goes unpunished, they will only have to keep ratcheting up the “worst crime” threshold to keep protecting greater criminals until it all breaks down.

Harbingeing on May 11, 2014 at 12:18 PM

I probably should have thought a little more about history before declaring IRSGate the WORST crime ever perpetuated by the DC Cesspool against the American People. It’s probably the 3rd worst.

It would be behind Lincoln’s War of the Northern Aggression and the Waco Massacre at the very least.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 2:32 PM

Dolce Far Niente on May 11, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Have they got enough yet to hire Anthony Hopkins to play Gosnell?

slickwillie2001 on May 11, 2014 at 1:40 PM

I’m thinking Mohamen Mehdi Ouazanni would be an appropriate choice to play Gosnell.

Dolce Far Niente on May 11, 2014 at 2:34 PM

No immunity for Lerner. She will simply lie and say, “I do not recall.”

Colony14 on May 11, 2014 at 2:35 PM

Apparently they will have to renew the contempt charge with each new Congress. I don’t see these spineless idiots bothering after this year, let alone until we get a new DOJ.

Cindy Munford on May 11, 2014 at 12:48 PM

And she would probably get pardoned by the POS.

upinak on May 11, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Lerner is clamming up for several reasons.

1. She is guilty as hell and should be facing DECADES in prison and she knows it.

2. As long as Eric Holder (or anyone else appointed by HUSSEIN) is AG, she will NEVER be prosecuted.

3. She WILL be pardoned (along with Holder and scores of others) who showed loyalty to Jugears and did his bidding in January 2017 and she knows it.

The only way to break her is to put her in jail NOW, which Boehner CAN do (this has happened in the past and is well established by precedent) and she literally can be kept in the capitol jail FOREVER as long as Congress renews her contempt citation every 2 years. Sure, she will get her pardon, but she CAN be made to rot in jail for nearly 3 years waiting for it.

That is the only way to ever get testimony out of her, and maybe that won’t even work. I do believe the White House knew exactly what she was doing, but Lois Lerner is like many of the parasites Obama put into the bureaucracy, she was going to do this with or without orders. She did the same thing in the past at the FEC, making up violations against conservatives. When they PUT HER IN THE IRS IN THAT POSITION they knew what she was going to do!

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 2:37 PM

When viewed in that light she might start to suspect that Congress already has one good witness, and is now looking for a second. Would you rather be testifying against others in a RICO case and have witness protection, or find yourself on the stand even if you believe you are innocent?

ajacksonian on May 11, 2014 at 1:57 PM

As I’ve said, there are people Congress should be looking to grant immunity to for testimony, and it’s not Lerner. It’s her immediate subordinates, the foot soldiers, the ones that got their hands dirty.

I’m sure all sorts of threats have been made by the Regime to those people to clam them up.

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 2:39 PM

Typical prosecutorial greed at work to give Lerner immunity. Give a pass to someone you can prove is guilty because you want to use her for a chance at Door #2. Cue the trombone plunger for the whomp whomp when the oversized rocking horse is inevitably revealed.

Whatever happened to kill the body and the head will fall? You take out the minions and soon enough there aren’t enough drones to save the Queen. But no. GOPe shysters seeking headlines will swing for the fences – when simply putting the ball in play will bring home the tying and winning runs – and strike out, as usual.

fitzfong on May 11, 2014 at 2:50 PM

I loathe this woman and the regime she is protecting.
That said, I’m troubled by congress deciding she has waived her 5th amendment rights based on an opening statement. It’s a dilution of the peoples Constitutional rights, even if it was done for the right reasons, these things have a way of coming back and biting us in the backside for the wrong reasons.

V7_Sport on May 11, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Boner needs to be thrown in jail for being a traitor to this country. That’s the only thing that explains his repeated bending over and doing whatever the Democrats want him to do. The leadership of the GOP in both the House and Senate need to be prosecuted for fraud by claiming to be Republicans.

flytier on May 11, 2014 at 2:05 PM

???? The subject was Lois Lerner and they appointed a special prosecutor.. but whatever:
Stay on target, Moby.

V7_Sport on May 11, 2014 at 3:01 PM

Any attempt by LL to insulate others in the IRS from accountability by taking the whole blame for what was done faces the barrier that the committee may come up against inconsistent statements from other witnesses close to LL, inconsistencies that could lead to Obstruction of Justice charges against those ‘others’, or even Perjury (Scooter Libby, are you watching?).
Then, if those inconsistencies/obstructions/perjury reveal that LL was less-than-truthful in her revelations, her immunity deal collapses, and she is liable to be, and will be, prosecuted for her mis-deeds.
The only way for her to make a deal and stay out of prison is to tell everything about everybody – damn the torpedoes.
The question is: Is she willing to do that?

Another Drew on May 11, 2014 at 3:04 PM

No immunity. That would be a huge error. She has a history of ideologically targeting people for persecution at the hands of the federal institutions she worked within. Throw her in jail.

I’m troubled by congress deciding she has waived her 5th amendment rights based on an opening statement.
V7_Sport on May 11, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Doesn’t trouble me a bit. Pleading the Fifth doesn’t work like the government redacting documents, deciding willy-nilly what to delete and what to leave in. You can’t make a statement and then hop off the stage. You speak, you waive your rights.

xNavigator on May 11, 2014 at 3:18 PM

Typical prosecutorial greed at work to give Lerner immunity. Give a pass to someone you can prove is guilty because you want to use her for a chance at Door #2. Cue the trombone plunger for the whomp whomp when the oversized rocking horse is inevitably revealed.

Whatever happened to kill the body and the head will fall? You take out the minions and soon enough there aren’t enough drones to save the Queen. But no. GOPe shysters seeking headlines will swing for the fences – when simply putting the ball in play will bring home the tying and winning runs – and strike out, as usual.

fitzfong on May 11, 2014 at 2:50 PM

As has been said, Lois Lerner should NOT be the person getting immunity because it’s likely SHE IS THE HEAD DOG in this crime! Yes, there are some tacit connections to the White House, but no one is going to be able to find a smoking gun. The fact that The Regime put someone with Lerner’s past in that position to direct audits is itself White House support for her actions.

The testimony they need isn’t Lerner. It’s the people who can send Lerner to prison for most of the rest of her life.

And how you get that is threaten her immediate subordinates with the same fate if THEY don’t turn on her. And better yet, you make it clear that the number of deals on the table are… limited. As in not everyone is going to have a chair to sit on when the music stops playing. Create infighting amongst the guilty and get them competing WITH EACH OTHER for the immunity deals…

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 3:24 PM

The problem here is, if Lois Lerner is granted Immunity, she will admit it was all her, nobody asked her to do it, and then it becomes an investigative cul-de-sac.

libfreesMom on May 11, 2014 at 11:10 AM

True, but that’s the risk of all immunity offers, isn’t it? This case isn’t unique in that regard; I suspect people who have to deal with such things are accustomed to making it work anyway? I hope?

I also see that Boehner, being the tough guy he typically is, has already said the House won’t have her arrested, but will rather leave to Eric Holder for enforcement.

Pardon me a moment while I say some things that might get me banned or arrested, in the privacy of my own office…

Midas on May 11, 2014 at 4:13 PM

I’m troubled by congress deciding she has waived her 5th amendment rights based on an opening statement.
V7_Sport on May 11, 2014 at 2:55 PM

I’m not.

There’s a process by which invoking your fifth amendment rights works, and if you don’t follow that – in fact, if you openly defy it – you don’t then still get to claim it.

Midas on May 11, 2014 at 4:15 PM

I would give immunity to everybody necessary EXCEPT lerner….I would give immunity to everybody in the Cincinnati office, and to lerner’s executive assistants and secretaries and accountants…..start there and interview those 10 people and see where it goes

clandestine on May 11, 2014 at 4:23 PM

No – sending her to Congressional Jail is the only punishment that is possible for anybody in the IRS scandal because if the pardons haven’t already been dished out, they will be before any criminal proceedings can begin.

Steve Eggleston on May 11, 2014 at 4:31 PM

If we want to get to the bottom of this mess we will have to hold our noses and give someone immunity. The only way to break their wall of silence is to get one brick loose.

rmkdbq on May 11, 2014 at 4:33 PM

As has been said, Lois Lerner should NOT be the person getting immunity because it’s likely SHE IS THE HEAD DOG in this crime! Yes, there are some tacit connections to the White House, but no one is going to be able to find a smoking gun. The fact that The Regime put someone with Lerner’s past in that position to direct audits is itself White House support for her actions.

The testimony they need isn’t Lerner. It’s the people who can send Lerner to prison for most of the rest of her life.

And how you get that is threaten her immediate subordinates with the same fate if THEY don’t turn on her. And better yet, you make it clear that the number of deals on the table are… limited. As in not everyone is going to have a chair to sit on when the music stops playing. Create infighting amongst the guilty and get them competing WITH EACH OTHER for the immunity deals…

ConstantineXI on May 11, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Agreed. I worry, however, of the tendency towards treating Lerner as a pawn rather than as the King. There are a lot of overly-ambitious prosecutors these days who are far more concerned with “breaking new legal ground” than with administering justice. Whether it be Giuliani with the mob, Fitzgerald with Libby or Conrad Black, Nifong with Duke Lacrosse, the Feds with the cops in the Rodney King beating or the prosecutor in the George Zimmermann trial, there’s a perversion of justice that comes from prosecutors angling for the big fish while ignoring the catch-able fish or using them as bait for the big one.

The primary interest in this case should be in getting the IRS’s illegal activity to stop…and to punish those who broke the law. Giving Lerner immunity in hopes of uncovering a larger conspiracy is a fool’s errand.

fitzfong on May 11, 2014 at 4:38 PM

Lots of talk of sending her to jail, what laws is she supposed to have broken? Or do you just want to jail her for contempt in refusing to answer?

rongoodman on May 11, 2014 at 4:39 PM

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