“I have not done anything wrong. I have not broken any laws,” Lois Lerner, head of the IRS tax-exempt unit, told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
“I have not violated any IRS rules or regulations, and I have not provided false information to this or any congressional committee,” she said. “Because I am asserting my right not to testify, I know that some people will assume that I have done something wrong. I have not.”
That Lerner chose to give an opening statement before asserting her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination angered some lawmakers.
You can be certain that statement comes with an expiration date.
Meanwhile, Ezra Klein has bravely declared that “heads should roll” at the IRS:
Put simply, firing civil servants takes a long time, creates a lot of hassle for management, and needs to be for cause. If it’s not for cause, the termination can be overturned, and the entire process would be for naught. This can lead to excessive reluctance on the part of management to go through the trouble of firing anyone. But what remains unclear in the IRS case is whether the directors even wanted to fire anyone.
In other words, Ezra’s “brave” declaration comes with plenty of room for (Administration-approved?) foot-dragging.
It’s gonna be a long, hot summer.