Jueves, 15 Noviembre, 2018

Jeff Sessions Dodges Trump Questions, Angering Democrats

Irune Rengel | 14 Junio, 2017, 11:01

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is sworn in before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., June 13, 2017.

The former Federal Bureau of Investigation director discussed a host of issues surrounding Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election, though his remarks also raised questions that may now be directed at Sessions.

Sessions also said he does not remember any other meetings with Russian officials, except those two, during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Sessions declared: "Let me state this clearly: I have never met with or had any conversations with Russians or any foreign officials concerning any interference with any campaign or election".

Sessions originally said that he disaffiliated himself simply because he was an adviser to Trump during the campaign, but doubt was cast on that explanation when Comey testified last week and said he had thought Sessions would recuse himself earlier than he did for "problematic" reasons that needed to be discussed in a closed session.

He also had prior conversations with Comey, who testified last week that, following a February 14 meeting with Trump, he told Sessions that he never again wanted to be left alone with the president.

Mr Comey said that, after an encounter with President Donald Trump in which he said Mr Trump pressured him to back off an investigation into the former national security adviser, Mr Comey "implored" Mr Sessions to make sure he was never left alone with the president again - but that Mr Sessions did not respond.

When Comey testified, there was nobody carrying water for the White House on the Senate Russia probe - even though half of the panel is comprised of Senate Republicans. However, Sessions said Comey should have spoken to his bosses if he wanted to or was asked to talk to the president about the investigation.

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Democratic Senator Ron Wyden told Sessions, "I believe the American people have had it with stonewalling".

Meanwhile, rumors were swirling that Trump is about to fire special counsel Robert Mueller. Namely, they were upset with his very public handling of the Hillary Clinton email probe, which Sessions said was a "usurpation" of Justice Department authority.

Using all the skills in filibustering and diversion that he learned in years as an Alabama senator, the Attorney General appeared to escape the hearing without major political damage.

Sessions and Kislyak bothattended an April 2016 Trump at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC. And that principle is that the Constitution provides the head of the executive branch certain privileges.

If you didn't know, via obscure Latin etymology, that the word testify is related to the word testicles, you could guess it from watching Senate testimony pretty much any time ever, but certainly this year. "Now, you're not answering questions".

"Did the president, in any of those interactions that you've shared with us today, ask you what you should be doing, or what our government should be doing, or the intelligence community, to protect America against Russian interference in our election system?"

Sessions: I'm not able to answer the question.

- Third Sessions-Russia meeting?

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On Sunday night, HBO's John Oliver opened up this week's edition of " Last Week Tonight " with an update on the probes into President Donald Trump and his campaign staff, which he dubbed "Stupid Watergate" a few weeks ago.

Later, Sessions directly blasted Comey for his testimony in private last week, "This is a secret innuendo out there being leaked about me - and I don't appreciate it". (For what it's worth: in Rome, you swore on your testicles to tell the truth).

He also said Comey should have shared his concerns about the Trump conversation with another Justice Department official, Dana Boente, who was then acting deputy attorney general, and would have been Comey's direct supervisor.

But Sessions appeared to have been invoking executive privilege on behalf of the president.

Lawmakers will also press Sessions about aspects of Comey's testimony last week.

"Further, I have no knowledge of any such conversations by anyone connected to the Trump campaign", Sessions said.

"I can not and will not violate my duty to protect the confidential communications I have with the president", he said. And by the time Sessions met with Kislyak at his office in September, then-President Barack Obama had already commented on the Russian hacking campaign and hinted at what could have motivated it.

Lawmakers are likely to press Sessions on any involvement with the Russian Federation investigation prior to recusing himself as well as what safeguards are now in place.

The post Sessions brands Russian Federation collusion claims a "detestable lie" appeared first on The Independent Uganda:.

Sessions to testify publicly before Senate Intelligence Committee Tuesday
Concerns have been raised about whether Sessions helped otherwise subvert the ongoing Russia-related investigations. The following day, Sessions recused himself from the Russian Federation probe.

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