What can you expect from Arlen Specter? You can expect a comment suggesting that the Senate Judiciary Committee is too politicized in supporting Monica Goodling's excuse for taking the Fifth Amendment. You can expect just that, and I saw him do that on television last night.
Goodling's lawyer, John Dowd, suggests that given the specter of I. Lewis Libby's conviction of lying to a Grand Jury the potential of Goodling's "taking a fall over the Department's bungled response 'is very real,' Dowd said," according to CBS. I don't get it. Libby lied, is Dowd suggesting that his client is going to lie? Or does he fear that her honest testimony would lead to her indictment.
Everyone's entitled to take the Fifth, if she's going to take it take it but don't come up with some specious reasoning to make it sound less damning than it is. If appearing before a "hostile" committee is a good excuse for taking the Fifth Amendment, why didn't all those great Hollywood writers and directors use it after appearing before the House on American Activities Committee. From the other side what about all the "good fellas" who appeared before the Kefauver Committee and had to take the Fifth in the face of his hostile and somewhat bigoted questions?
Dowd, who is an excellent lawyer, is setting up a string of sham excuses for his client's plea before she even appears and Arlen Specter is helping him do it.
(I once saved John Dowd from a public appearance where he'd been set up for an undeserved public lynching. That's another story and I'm not going to tell it here but, unbeknownst to him, he owes me one.)