Sessions' testimony to Congress tomorrow to be open to public

Erika Turner
June 14, 2017

Mr. Sessions' testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, scheduled to start at 2:30 p.m., has the potential for high drama as the Russian Federation probe continues to dominate USA politics, sidelining President Trump's domestic agenda.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is preparing for sharp questions from his former Senate colleagues about his role in the firing of James Comey and his Russian contacts during the campaign.

Comey said he knew Sessions would recuse himself from the Russian investigation because, "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".

Because of Comey's testimony, Sessions says he wants to talk to the same committee Comey did. Feinstein said she was especially concerned after National Intelligence Director Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers refused to answer questions from the intelligence committee about possible undue influence by Trump. But senators on the committee are expected to question Sessions about his meetings with Russians - a topic that's come under increased scrutiny amid investigations into Russia's interference in the US election.

The Justice Department ultimately agreed to a Tuesday public hearing in an attempt to show there's nothing to hide and nothing controversial about Sessions' interactions with Russian officials, officials said. Memos that he had written in the course of his official government duties about privileged conversations with the President. Did Comey relate that in a closed door session?

The Justice Department said Monday that Sessions requested Tuesday's committee hearing be open because he "believes it is important for the American people to hear the truth directly from him".

[O] n Sunday, ABC's George Stephanopoulos asked Trump attorney Jay Sekulow whether the president would pledge not to interfere or order the attorney general to fire Mueller.

The White House on Monday suggested Sessions could invoke executive privilege during his testimony depending on "the scope of the questions".

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

Though the Justice Department maintains that it has fully disclosed the extent of Sessions' foreign contacts previous year, lawmakers have continued to press him for answers about an April 2016 event at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, where both Sessions and Kislyak attended a foreign policy speech by Trump. "We're going to do more with less", he told members of the Appropriations Committee, describing the president's budget priorities as "smart investments in programs that work". Sessions, a former senator, later issued a clarification saying he had met with the ambassador.

As for the timing of Sessions' recusal, Comey said the FBI expected the attorney general to take himself out of the matters under investigation weeks before he actually did.

Other reports by Insurance News

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