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View Diary: Clapper Admits He Lied to Congress in Letter Posted by Senator Wyden (237 comments)

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  •  As we learned when Cheney lied to grand jury (0+ / 0-)

    in the Plame case, Fitz kept inviting him back to the grand jury over and over and over, so Cheney could keep "clarifying" and "revising/extending" his remarks until he managed to wiggle just below the perjury threshold, then he was in the clear.  It's very hard to prove perjury.  If one clarifies one's remarks later in a timely manner*, that's all it takes to get out of it.

    * By "timely manner" I mean that the clarifications and revisions of the falsehoods in question must occur before a determinative conclusion of a proceeding or investigation (e.g. before the end of a trial, before the end of a grand jury seating, before the end of an investigation that may lead to a later trial, etc).  In this Clapper case, the "proceeding" taking place is simply the ongoing Congressional inquiry, and Clapper's continuing to answer questions either in person or by letter before the end of the congressional inquiry would qualify as clarifying/revising his original answers in a "timely manner".

    I'll also add (and this is not relevant to Clapper, I just add it for completeness) that in a normal criminal or civil case, if one lies in testimony and doesn't bother to revise those answers in a timely manner, but it is felt that those answers had no real impact on the outcome of the trial, then it's unlikely perjury charges would be brought.

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