Justice Dept. probe may limit Goodling’s testimony.

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"Justice Dept. probe may limit Goodling’s testimony."

The Washington Post notes that the internal Justice Department investigation of former Gonzales counsel Monica Goodling, which was first reported today, may interfere with her ability to testify before Congress:

The Goodling revelations raise uncertainty about whether she will testify before the House Judiciary Committee, which offered her limited immunity from prosecution last week in exchange for her testimony about the firings. Goodling, who resigned last month, has invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in refusing to answer questions from Congress.

Such an immunity deal requires approval from the Justice Department, which must agree that her testimony would not interfere with an ongoing criminal probe, according to administration and congressional officials. Although the joint probe into the attorney firings by Inspector General Glenn A. Fine and OPR is not criminal, the allegations against Goodling raise the possibility that a crime may have been committed.

Fired U.S. Attorney David Iglesias says he believes that Goodling holds the “keys to the kingdom” in terms of uncovering the roots of the attorney purge. Will the Justice Department allow her to testify?

UPDATE: Sandy Levinson at Balkinization: “So let’s get this straight: It is up to the DOJ to decide whether Congress will be able to give immunity to Ms. Goodling. Whom, if anyone, would ‘we’ trust in the current DOJ to make that decision? … Isn’t it clear that an independent prosecutor should be appointed (but by whom and under what authority) since everyone in the DOJ is hopelessly conflicted out?”

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