Lerner's attorney says she won't testify

Thomas Lifson
Chaos reigns in the House investigation of the IRS targeting of conservative groups. Following Darrell Issa’s claim on Fox News Sunday that Lois Lerner would testify before his committee, Ms. Lerner’s attorney issued a denial. Via Politico:

Rep. Darrell Issa doesn’t know what he’s talking about, the attorney for former IRS official Lois Lerner said Sunday.

Issa, the California Republican who chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee, told “Fox News Sunday” that Lerner, the former head of the IRS tax-exempt division, would testify before his committee Wednesday, which he said he had been told by her attorney.

That attorney, William W. Taylor, said Issa is wrong.

“As of now, she intends to continue to assert her Fifth Amendment rights,” Taylor told POLITICO. “I do not know why Issa said what he said.”

To complicate matters, CBS reports (hat tip: Legal Insurrection):

If it was a case of simple misunderstanding, it hasn’t been resolved. Even after Taylor’s statement, a spokesman for the committee told CBSNews.com that the attorney had “confirmed in writing that Ms. Lerner is willing to testify and she is now requesting a one-week delay for the public hearing. We have informed Mr. Taylor that Ms. Lerner may make her request for a delay on Wednesday when she appears for the hearing.”

My best guess is that high pressure negotiations are underway with Lerner and her attorney, who want immunity, while Issa is pressuring her on the basis of evidence he already possesses.

Chaos reigns in the House investigation of the IRS targeting of conservative groups. Following Darrell Issa’s claim on Fox News Sunday that Lois Lerner would testify before his committee, Ms. Lerner’s attorney issued a denial. Via Politico:

Rep. Darrell Issa doesn’t know what he’s talking about, the attorney for former IRS official Lois Lerner said Sunday.

Issa, the California Republican who chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee, told “Fox News Sunday” that Lerner, the former head of the IRS tax-exempt division, would testify before his committee Wednesday, which he said he had been told by her attorney.

That attorney, William W. Taylor, said Issa is wrong.

“As of now, she intends to continue to assert her Fifth Amendment rights,” Taylor told POLITICO. “I do not know why Issa said what he said.”

To complicate matters, CBS reports (hat tip: Legal Insurrection):

If it was a case of simple misunderstanding, it hasn’t been resolved. Even after Taylor’s statement, a spokesman for the committee told CBSNews.com that the attorney had “confirmed in writing that Ms. Lerner is willing to testify and she is now requesting a one-week delay for the public hearing. We have informed Mr. Taylor that Ms. Lerner may make her request for a delay on Wednesday when she appears for the hearing.”

My best guess is that high pressure negotiations are underway with Lerner and her attorney, who want immunity, while Issa is pressuring her on the basis of evidence he already possesses.