Jeff Sessions calls notion he colluded with Russian Federation a 'detestable lie'

Gladys Abbott
June 14, 2017

Al Franken, D-Minn., about an alleged "continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump's surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government", and that is why he claimed wrongly that he had not met with Russians. For one thing, the attorney general testified in a separate congressional hearing: "I have confidence in Mr. Mueller".

In his dramatic appearance before former colleagues, Mr Sessions also contradicted a contention made by former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey at a hearing before the same panel last week.

Sessions was adamant he never had a third meeting with the Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

"Maybe that is because Jim Comey said last week as he said to Donald Trump that on three times, he assured him he was not under investigation", Cotton said. Much of the government seems bogged down in litigating the Russian Federation controversy and odd happenings in the Oval Office, where the half-life of presidential confidences has never been shorter.

Last week, Comey appeared before the Senate Intelligence Committee, where he accused the president of lying. He sipped from two glasses of ice-water as he tried to convince the committee of how little he could remember despite a honest desire to help.

Sessions has said that neither encounter had anything to with the Trump campaign in 2016 and that the meetings took place in his role as a lawmaker. "I hope you can let this go". "It makes me nervous", Sessions replied to a question from Harris, who is the only black woman in the entire United States Senate. Kamala Harris - which earned a rebuke from Sen.

Sessions is vulnerable in at least three areas. He said he never sought or received intelligence relating to Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 election. "So, I need to be correct as best I can", Sessions said.

However, Sessions refused to say whether he ever spoke with Trump about firing Comey. In his own testimony, Comey said that Trump asked to meet with him alone and that Sessions was the last one out of the room.

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"I'm not able to invoke executive privilege, that's the President's prerogative", Sessions reiterated. "He's a good guy".

Sessions criticized Comey's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, which the White House had initially cited as the ostensible reason for his firing. "I do recall being one of the last ones to leave", Sessions said. In fact, Sen. Warner, we had talked about it even before I was confirmed and before he was confirmed. He did differ from Comey on two points.

Sklansky: Sessions acted angry about Comey's suggestion that there were undisclosed facts that might have required Sessions to recuse himself from the Russian Federation inquiry. Sessions requested an open hearing, though he made clear in his opening remarks and several times during his testimony that there were some things he would not discuss, including confidential conversations with the president.

"I responded to his comment by agreeing that the FBI and Department of Justice needed to be careful to follow Department policies regarding appropriate contacts with the White House", Sessions said, adding that he was confident that Comey understood the rules on communicating with the White House about ongoing investigations.

Asked about media reports that he had met with Kislyak on a third occasion at a Washington hotel a year ago, Sessions testified that did not remember meeting or having a conversation with the ambassador at the event.

Democratic senators pressed Sessions on the legal rationale for his refusal to discuss those private conversations, as Sessions acknowledged that Trump had not asserted executive privilege around the hearing. They demanded some kind of written policy or regulation from the Justice Department.

In his confirmation hearing, Sessions testified that he did not have "communications" with the Russians during the presidential campaign.

Sessions said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein prepared a memo on Comey's performance that "noted some serious problems" with his performance.

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