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Right Hooks

Flynn Pleads the Fifth

This isn't an admission of guilt; it's the realization that federal investigations tend to incriminate somebody.

National Security Desk · May 23, 2017

Three months after National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was fired in a political assassination, he invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination and declined a subpoena from the Senate Intelligence Committee to testify regarding the whole Russia kerfuffle. Clearly that means he’s guilty, leftists insist.

Nothing of the sort, as Scooter Libby could attest. Libby, an aide to then-Vice President Dick Cheney, was convicted on bogus charges of obstructing the FBI’s investigation into the leak of CIA pencil-pusher Valerie Plame’s name to columnist Robert Novak. George W. Bush commuted Libby’s sentence, but didn’t pardon him, and Libby was left as a casualty of a federal investigation that turned up nothing regarding its original purpose.

National Review’s David French explains that such casualties aren’t uncommon. “Federal investigations are extremely perilous even for those targets innocent of the crimes being investigated,” French says. “In fact, it’s common for investigators to indict or convict the targets of their investigations for misconduct during the investigation, rather than for the alleged crimes that sparked their inquiries to begin with.”

Flynn smartly listened to the advice of a good legal team after the Intelligence Committee declined his previous request for immunity. Flynn isn’t squeaky clean, but that’s not the point. He is not obligated to aid the Democrat witch-hunt regarding Donald Trump’s alleged collusion with Russia any more than he already unwittingly has.

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