Monday, March 26, 2007
Monica Goodling, senior counselor to AG Gonzalez, plans to take the 5th Amendment when called to testify by the legislature. (see Wall Street Jrl here, N.Y. Times here). Her attorney's letter here explains the reasons for this course of conduct.
Now if this had taken place in a corporation that was under investigation, legal counsel for the corporation would be calling the parties in and asking the employees to answer questions. Either internal or external counsel would be investigating to determine if there was wrongdoing involved in the activities. In all likelihood the individual would have no attorney-client privilege in a world where deferred prosecution agreements allow the corporation to act as mini-prosecutors and turn over evidence of the individuals to the government. And if the individual refused to speak with counsel - the result would be - you're fired. Will that happen here? And perhaps, more importantly, should that happen here?
What it is important to remember here is that we are all entitled to exercise constitutional rights, even those who work at the Department of Justice.