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Murtha Watch: Cut-and-run smear merchant wants immunity

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By Michelle Malkin  •  November 19, 2008 01:10 PM

I had prayed before the election that I wouldn’t have to pay one more iota of attention to the pork-filled, cut-and-run smear merchant John Murtha. Our prayers, alas, were not answered. Now, this corruptocrat is trying to hide from justice in the Haditha slander lawsuits:

A Marine who sued U.S. Rep. John Murtha for defamation urged a federal appeals court Tuesday to order the Johnstown Democrat to testify under oath in the case.

An attorney for Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich told the court that he needs Murtha’s deposition to determine how often the congressman made the claim that Marines in Iraq engaged in “cold-blooded murder and war crimes” in the slayings of civilians in Haditha.

A government attorney representing Murtha told the judges that the lawmaker has immunity from the lawsuit because he was acting in his official role as a lawmaker when he made the comments to reporters.

Arguments about whether Murtha must testify was argued before a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

…Assistant U.S Attorney Darrell Valdez, who represents Murtha, argued that a member of Congress is “absolutely immune” from a defamation suit because there’s no circumstance in which speaking to the media is not within the scope of a lawmaker’s employment.

Valdez said it would be hard to find an issue more of public concern than the Iraq war.

But Judge Karen Lecraft Henderson seemed skeptical about Valdez’s argument.

“Are you saying a congressman can say anything that he wants about the Iraq war?” Henderson asked Valdez. She questioned if intent and motive should also be considered.

As always, find the latest at Defend Our Marines.

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Posted in: Haditha,John Murtha

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