'you can't use it like that'
After conspiracy theorist Alex Jones claimed Tuesday to have pleaded the Fifth "almost 100 times" during his testimony before the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, panel member Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) has publicly taken issue with the flawed strategy.
"The thing that Mr. Jones and all of the defendants and all of the witnesses are forgetting is that the Fifth Amendment is meant to be used selectively if you think that you might be incriminating yourself by answering a question," Raskin said during an appearance on MSNBC. "It's not a magic wand that you wave over the whole proceeding and you don't have to answer anything."
"So, it's only to be used if you think that the answer that you're about to give will provide evidence to the government that could be used against you in prosecution for a crime," he added. "But if it relates to other people, if it relates to general events, if it doesn't lead to your own incrimination, you can't use it like that."
"So what we're seeing is this extravagant new deployment of the Fifth Amendment as a kind of get-out-of-a-subpoena card."
Jones was asked to appear before the committee last month in a letter claiming investigators had evidence he had helped plan and finance the "Stop the Steal" rally preceding the Capitol attack.