IRS official Lois Lerner to plead the Fifth
By Aaron Blake
Lois Lerner, the IRS official who first disclosed the agency’s improper targeting of conservative groups two weeks ago, will invoke her right not to testify Wednesday for fear of self-incrimination, her lawyer has told the House Oversight Committee.
“The committee has been contacted by Ms. Lerner’s lawyer who stated that his client intended to invoke her 5th amendment right and refuse to answer questions,” said oversight spokesman Ali Ahmad.
While Lerner’s lawyer requested that she not be forced to appear, Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has issued a subpeona that compels her to appear. His spokesman said that remains the case.
“Ms. Lerner remains under subpoena from Chairman Issa to appear at tomorrow’s hearing — the Committee has a Constitutional obligation to conduct oversight,” Ahmad said. “Chairman Issa remains hopeful that she will ultimately decide to testify tomorrow about her knowledge of outrageous IRS targeting of Americans for their political beliefs.”
Lerner hasn’t yet testified in the case, even as former IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman and former acting IRS commission Steven Miller have.
She was scheduled to testify Wednesday but will instead plead the 5th Amendment, according to someone with knowledge of her plans.