DOJ Official Brings Storm by Taking the Fifth

Fired US Attorneys, revealing emails, testimony before Congress, & pleading the 5th, oh my! This Law.com article has key details:

"Taking the Fifth Amendment is everybody's right. But it's a choice that can send up a red flag, often invoked by people who have something to hide. Think of Enron's Andrew Fastow and Iran-Contra's Oliver North.

"So when Monica Goodling said last week that she would refuse to talk to Congress about the firing of eight U.S. Attorneys, it was hard not to wonder what this 33-year-old party loyalist may have done wrong.

"Her pre-emptive move (Congress has yet to issue a subpoena) immediately raised questions, innuendo and gossip: Was she trying to avoid incriminating herself in a crime (and if so, what crime?), or, as her attorneys claimed, was she merely afraid that in the 'perilous' partisan environment, even an innocent witness could end up in trouble?

"Some D.C. defense lawyers remain puzzled by Goodling's strategy. Few would publicly criticize her, but some said that the decision ultimately draws more attention to Goodling instead of her superiors, who are ultimately Congress' target."

What do you think about this whole situation?


Paralegals staff voting question 'hotlines'

Helping people vote legally & successfully is a good thing:

"South Carolina voters will have a lot of company at the polls on Election Day as several groups say they will watch for problems across the state.

[snip]

"The U.S. Justice Department will dispatch more than 800 observers nationwide, a record for a non-presidential election year, but will not make an announcement about where poll watchers will be located until Monday, agency spokeswoman Cynthia Magnuson said Friday.

"Meanwhile, several voter groups will document voting problems and a task force made up of U.S. attorneys and FBI agents will investigate any allegations of election fraud.

"The poll watchers will be looking for incidents like when several students, were turned away momentarily from a precinct at Benedict College in 2004 after poll watchers affiliated with the Republican Party contested the legality of their vote.

[snip]

"In addition to having volunteers at the polls, voters who encounter problems can call 866-OUR-VOTE as part of a national effort organized by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

"Callers to the hotline will reach a legal assistant trained in South Carolina election law. If the caller needs immediate legal attention, it will be routed to Columbia, where attorneys will be standing by."