Attorney General Sessions' Testimony To Senate Panel Will Be Public
Jun 14 2017
The attorney general has also been the subject of rumors that he might leave the Trump administration.
The view of the USA attorney general coming before a group of aggressive senators may paint a picture similar to the media bonanza of Comey's blockbuster hearing last week.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions will face questions about the firing of FBI Director James Comey and any undeclared meetings with Russian officials when he goes before a U.S. Senate hearing on Tuesday, becoming the highest-ranking member of President Donald Trump's Cabinet to testify in the affair.
Comey said last week the Federal Bureau of Investigation had expected Sessions to distance himself from the probe weeks before he did.
"I thought that was one of the most disturbing moments in the hearing with James Comey last week was when Sen". The Justice Department has denied that, saying Sessions stressed to Comey the need to be careful about following appropriate policies. During his nomination hearing in January, the former senator told the Senate Judiciary Committee that he had no contacts with Russian officials as part of the Trump campaign. Sessions argued that in the context of that hearing, "my answer was a fair and correct response to the charge as I understood it".
Sessions stepped aside in March from the federal investigation into contacts between Russia and the campaign after acknowledging that had met twice past year with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. He had told lawmakers at his January confirmation hearing that he had not met with Russians during the campaign.
Sessions said his decision to accept the intelligence committee's invitation to appear was due in part to Comey's testimony.
Sessions was adamant that he did not have a private meeting with Kislyak at that event.
Democratic senators have seized on the possibility of a third meeting to suggest that Sessions has not been forthcoming about the extent of his communications with the ambassador.
Lawmakers, including Al Franken of Minnesota and Patrick Leahy of Vermont, have asked the FBI to investigate and to determine if Sessions committed perjury when he denied having had meetings with Russians.
Sessions testified Tuesday that he recused himself from the current Russian Federation investigation only because of a regulation that required it because of his involvement in the Trump campaign. That was not so, he said.
Media reports last week said Sessions offered to resign because of tensions with Trump over his decision to recuse himself from the FBI's Russian Federation probe.
It was unclear yesterday if Sessions' testimony will happen in a public or closed session. "This is a secret innuendo being leaked out there about me, and I don't appreciate it".
"We also were aware of facts that I can't discuss in an open setting that would make his continued engagement in a Russia-related investigation problematic", Comey said. The allegations are being investigated by special counsel Robert Mueller and several congressional panels, including the Senate Intelligence Committee. "I have confidence in Mr. Mueller", he said.
This prompts the question, would Sessions support the President and fire the special counsel, if he requested it?
Sessions' appearance is not without risk. Comey alleges that Trump then privately asked him to drop a probe into former national security adviser Michael Flynn's contacts with Russian Federation. "And when asked I said that to the president".