Lois Lerner, former Director of the IRS Exempt Organizations division, again invoked the Fifth Amendment during questioning before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee today. That division, while Lerner was the Director, has been accused of improperly targeting conservative groups for extra scrutiny. She previously invoked the Fifth Amendment during a Congressional hearing in May of last year.
Representative Issa adjourned the Committee as a result of Lerner's invocation of the Fifth Amendment. The May 2013 hearing had not been adjourned but only recessed. He stated that the only reason the hearing had been recessed was to hear Lerner's testimony.
There was considerable acrimony between Representatives Issa and Cummings at the time of the adjournment. Rep. Cummings wanted the hearing to continue so he could make a political statement.
Due to the fact that there is an open criminal investigation at the Department of Justice, Lerner has the right to invoke the Fifth Amendment. One of the key questions in the investigation is how high up in the Administration the direction to excessively scrutinize conservative Republican groups.
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