Thursday, 21 September, 2017

Sessions to face sharp questions on Russia contacts

Lawyers, Whistleblowers: Comey's Release of Memos Methodical 'Marked man' Attorney General Jeff Sessions abruptly cancels public testimony
Christy Curtis | 14 June, 2017, 04:52

As many as 19.5 million Americans - excluding digital audiences - tuned in to watch former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey's public Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on June 8.

The attorney general is also expected to push back on the notion that he committed perjury when he denied having had any communications with Russians during the presidential campaign previous year, the source said.

The hearing will be held Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. The Department of Justice has denied that this meeting took place.

"As NPR's Carrie Johnson recently reported on All Things Considered: "[Sources] are telling me Trump has been very angry with Jeff Sessions for recusing himself in the Russian Federation investigation to begin with, lots of profane conversations and yelling.

On March 1, The Washington Post reported that Sessions met twice with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the campaign.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is slated to appear before the Senate intelligence committee on Tuesday.

White House frustrations with the Justice Department over the Russian Federation investigation spilled into public view last week when Trump on Twitter criticized the legal strategy in defending his proposed travel ban.

The next day, facing questions about why he did not disclose those two meetings with Kislyak, Sessions recused himself from the Russian Federation investigation because of his role in the Trump campaign. That prompted at least some members of the committee to push for a closed hearing, or at least some allotted time to meet with Sessions privately after the public forum, aides said.

In his testimony, Mr Comey said he had asked Mr Sessions not to leave him alone with Mr Trump following meetings where he said Mr Trump had asked Mr Comey for his loyalty.

Here's what you need to know about Sessions before he testifies. The attorney general may also face questions on that. His first exchange with Kislyak was following a speech to foreign ambassadors at the Heritage Foundation and the second was when Kislyak and about twenty other ambassadors visited Sessions' office.

Collins also asked Rosenstein what he'd do if Trump told him to fire Mueller.

Trump's personal lawyer also challenged Comey's account, saying the president never asked for the investigation to be dropped. The probe over the possible ties between Trump's campaign and Russian Federation is now in the hands of special counsel Robert Mueller for Russian Federation investigation following the Comey dismissal.

"I don't understand why the President just doesn't clear this matter up once and for all", said Senator Susan Collins, a member of the committee, referring to the existence of any recordings. "I have not met with any Russians at any time to discuss any political campaign and those remarks are unbelievable to me and are false", he said.

The top Democrat on the House Intelligence committee says Congress would not sit still if President Donald Trump chose to fire the special counsel leading the investigation into Russian interference in the US election and possible collusion with Trump's campaign.

Spicer did not explicitly endorse Sessions' appearance, saying in response to a question, "We're aware of it, and we'll go from there".

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