What Really Happened At The Mayflower? Sessions Gives Conflicting Answers

Owen Stevens
June 14, 2017

This will be the first time Sessions has testified in Congress since he recused himself from the Justice Department's probe into Russian meddling in last year's election and the firing of FBI Director James Comey.

Sessions, a senior member of Trump's Cabinet and an adviser to his election campaign a year ago, had a series of tense exchanges with Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee during about 2-1/2 hours of testimony as they pressed him to recount discussions with the Republican president.

Sessions confirmed that he had left Comey on his own with Trump in the Oval Office alone on February 14, though declined to say whether he was ordered to do so by the President citing the need to keep his conversations with him private.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday avoided answering a handful of questions during his hearing before the Senate intelligence committee - but sought to explicitly avoid saying he is invoking "executive privilege". "I am following the historic policies of the Department of Justice" on private discussions with the White House.

Sessions repeatedly said he could not reveal details of conversations with President Donald Trump concerning the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Sessions, a senior member of the Republican Trump's Cabinet and an adviser to his presidential campaign, had a series of tense exchanges with Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee during about 2-1/2 hours of high-stakes testimony as they pressed him to recount conversations with the president.

Mr Sessions refused to say whether he had ever discussed the Russian Federation investigation with Mr Trump, arguing that he could not disclose private communications with the president.

The former Federal Bureau of Investigation director also testified that the agency had believed Sessions was "inevitably going to recuse" for reasons he could not elaborate on.

Some of the questions likely to be posed to Sessions will focus on his meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the campaign.

Former FBI boss James Comey was sacked by the President over a "lack of discipline", U.S. attorney general Jeff Sessions has claimed. Comey said he felt pressure from Trump to end the FBI investigation of Flynn.

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions hasn't sought any information on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, he said . But many Democrats have accused Sessions of misleading the Senate Judiciary Committee during his January confirmation hearing.

Jeff Sessions testifies before Senate
But: When Comey brought it up the next day, Sessions said he agreed it wasn't a good idea to be alone with the president. Sessions was repeatedly brought to task for evading questions on key parts of the Senate investigation.

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The former Alabama senator, who's removed himself from the U.S. Justice Department's inquiry into the Russian question due to contacts he had a year ago with a Kremlin envoy, expressed disappointment that part of the Senate panel's focus is on him.

He said the FBI was aware of facts that made Sessions' continued engagement with the investigation "problematic".

"You raised your right hand here today and said you would solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth", Democratic Senator Martin Heinrich said.

Sessions was exceptionally weak in explaining how his recusal - which covered the Russian Federation investigation and anything coming from the 2016 campaign - allowed him to insert himself into Comey's firing.

Testifying at a Senate hearing on Tuesday, he vowed to defend his honour "against scurrilous and false allegations". Sessions' Democratic critics quipped that's like refusing to answer questions in court, because you might later request immunity under the Fifth Amendment.

Comey's testimony will form a dramatic sequel to Comey's own appearance before the Senate intelligence committee last week, and he will have to tackle several open loops that emerged during that appearance, which twisted the knife in an administration that has struggled to extricate itself from the Russian Federation cloud.

"My answer was a fair and correct response to the charge as I understood it", he said.

It has always been known that Trump briefly met Ambassador Kislyak that day at a VIP reception shortly before he gave a foreign policy address at the hotel.

However, Sessions refused to say whether he ever spoke with Trump about firing Comey. "I don't know, and so I don't have an answer for the question". But Sessions recused himself from the Russian Federation investigation in March after the revelations of the two Kislyak meetings. "I don't know, Sen".

Other reports by VgToday

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