In his column today, John Stossel makes this point about the indictment of Roger Clemens for lying to Congress:
Clemens may have lied to Congress in 2008 about whether he used PEDs, but who cares? Congress shouldn’t even be asking such questions.
While I agree with Stossel that Congress shouldn’t really be investigating steroid use in baseball, this is all Clemens’ own fault.
When the Mitchell Report came out in December 2007 and the House Committee investigation was reviewing it, Clemens and his attorney demanded a public hearing where he could answer what he contended were lies being spread by his former trainer. When Andy Pettitte, a teammate and personal friend, came forward and admitted both that he had used steroids on one occasion and that Clemens had admitted to him that he had used them as well, Clemens essentially called his friend a lair. The evidence that Clemens was lying that day in February 2008 was readily apparent and his testimony under cross-examination by Committee members was, quite frankly, an embarressment. But, he knew the consequences of lying under oath and he choose to do it anyway.
Like I said, I don’t think this should even have been a Congressional issue. It’s an internal baseball matter. But, that’s not what’s at stake here. Clemens put himself out front when the allegations came out by denying them publicly and then doing it again under oath. Now, it looks like he lied.
That’s called perjury. And that’s a problem. It’s also against the law.
Clemens is entitled to a presumption of innocence under the law, but the evidence doesn’t look good, and if he’s convicted I’m not going to shed a tear.