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Federal judge approves Goodling immunity in US Attorney firings

[JURIST] US District Judge Thomas Hogan approved an offer of immunity [JURIST report] Friday for former Department of Justice aide Monica Goodling [JURIST news archive], clearing the way for Goodling's testimony before Congress on the firings of eight US Attorneys [JURIST news archive]. Under Hogan's order, Goodling may not refuse to testify. The House Judiciary Committee voted in April to grant Goodling immunity from prosecution [press release]. Goodling told the committee in March that she would not testify about her role in the firings [JURIST report], and stated through her lawyer that she would seek protection under her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination if the committee issued her a subpoena. The DOJ said earlier this month that although officials preferred that Goodling not receive immunity, the department would not try to block immunity for Goodling [letter; JURIST report].

Goodling resigned [JURIST report] from her position as White House liaison at the DOJ in April and the DOJ has since opened an investigation [JURIST report] into whether she considered the political affiliations of candidates for career prosecutor positions in the DOJ, contrary to federal law and longstanding departmental practice. AP has more.

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