We previously reported about the fight between the House Judiciary Committee and Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, who was trying to prevent the GOP from deposing Mark Pomerantz. Now there’s some news about what happened in the deposition of Pomerantz that took place on Friday.
To recap, Pomerantz had previously been hired by the former Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance in February 2021, specifically to investigate the financial dealings of Donald Trump.
He had been a former federal prosecutor. He left the office in February 2022 after Bragg — who became the DA — refused to proceed any further with any action against Trump. It looked like the case wasn’t going anywhere. Pomerantz even wrote a book about it.
But then Trump declared for president in November 2022, and the indictment against Trump came down at the beginning of April.
That smelled to high heaven and raised a lot of questions about why Bragg now wanted to pursue the case—when he didn’t appear to think it was worth pursuing previously.
So, the GOP wanted to depose Pomerantz to get to the nature of why Bragg was telling Pomerantz he wasn’t going to pursue the case and any political motivation by Bragg in pursuing it now.
Bragg fought the subpoena to have Pomerantz deposed, which tells you a lot right there. He was desperate not to have the GOP talk to Pomerantz. But he lost when the judge said that he couldn’t block the subpoena. The judge gave Bragg a serious smackdown, saying he was “engaging in precisely the type of political theater he claims to fear.”
Bragg claimed he was concerned about grand jury secrecy, which Pomerantz wouldn’t have anything to do with, since he wasn’t involved in this indictment against Trump, having long since left. The judge just dispatched him with a killer footnote in her decision, noting that there were leaks out of Bragg’s grand jury, which was how we all came to know about the 34 charges before the indictment was even unsealed.
So, that brings us up to the deposition. I predicted that he would claim privilege and that’s exactly what he did, in a statement he gave at the start of the deposition. He also invoked his 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination saying that the Manhattan District Attorney’s office had previously warned him before he published a book on the investigation that he could face criminal liability if he revealed grand jury material or violated a provision of the New York City Charter dealing with misuse of confidential information.
This is a pretty snotty statement.
Mark Pomerantz opening statement to House Judiciary Committee. He calls the committee’s subpoena to him “political theater” and explains that he is taking the 5th now that formal charges are pending against Trump pic.twitter.com/S8EeY6cr1u
— Annie Grayer (@AnnieGrayerCNN) May 12, 2023
He even called it “political theater” — which sounds like he was taking a shot at the judge. He then refused to answer any questions.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) said he had “never had a more obstructive and less cooperative witness in my over 20 years in Congress.”
.@repdarrellissa on former New York District Attorney Mark Pomerantz’s deposition before the House Judiciary Committee: "I've never had a more obstructive and less cooperative witness in my over 20 years in Congress." pic.twitter.com/Z8o0Fi1hFR
— CSPAN (@cspan) May 12, 2023
But I see a few problems here with Pomerantz’s take, besides the fact that he’s trying to avoid giving up the conversations with Bragg. His statement goes beyond a simple invocation of the 5th; indeed, he does talk about the case, so one might argue he’s waived by making the statement. You can’t selectively refuse to answer but then make statements about the matter.
There’s also the question of his prior statements and his book, yet now, he’s trying to claim privilege so he doesn’t have to talk? He’s already written on the subject, so again, he may have waived. Then, as the judge noted in her finding against Bragg, Pomerantz wasn’t involved in the present indictment.
House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH) said he was “surprised at some of the answers,” but declined to provide further details, citing Committee rules. So, it’s not clear what he was talking about. But Jordan said he would be talking to the Committee’s attorneys and members about taking legal action against Pomerantz, including holding him in contempt.
Issa also indicated in the above video that they would likely be going back to the court to get Pomerantz to answer, and that it would be “for the court to decide when we object to his failure to answer any questions.”
Scumbag rapist criminal qtrump invokes Fifth Amendment, duh: This pathological liar (and its’ disgusting grifter whelps) must be deported back where it came: HELL.
You need to have the meds that you are on checked out.
You only claim the 5th when you have something to hide.