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4 takeaways from Sessions' feisty testimony to Congress about Russian Federation

4 takeaways from Sessions' feisty testimony to Congress about Russian Federation”

Richard Burr, committee chairman to Sessions before his opening testimony.

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. The White House has been inconsistent with its public messaging about the dismissal - initially saying Trump took the recommendation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein about Comey's management of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, but then the president himself said he had made up his mind prior to receiving the recommendations from the two top lawyers at the Department of Justice. Sessions reiterated Tuesday those meetings were in his capacity as a lawmaker and not about the campaign. He did allow for the possibility the men could have had a brief interaction "in passing" at a well-attended reception at the Mayflower Hotel before an April 2016 foreign policy speech by then-candidate Trump.

"No", said Sessions, followed by a giggle and laughter in the audience.

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.

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".

Sessions insisted he stepped aside from the Russian Federation investigation because he was a principal adviser to the Trump campaign, not because he did something wrong or was a subject of the probe.

Comey said he held back because he expected Sessions to withdraw from the Russian Federation inquiry, and the bureau was aware of "facts that I can't discuss in an open setting that would make his continued engagement in a Russia-related investigation problematic".

But the attorney general, an early Trump supporter, revealed little in the congressional hearing about the ongoing Russian Federation saga or Trump's role in possibly trying to quash the investigation looking into it.

And Trump himself undercut the reasoning for firing Comey that Sessions and Rosenstein had presented, saying he was going to fire Comey anyway "regardless of recommendation".

When others turned away homeless man at dinner Georgia woman says God told her not
When others turned away homeless man at dinner Georgia woman says God told her not

"He thought that Attorney General Sessions did a very good job", White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters, including NPR's Tamara Keith, traveling on Air Force One on Tuesday night. Sessions cited a Justice Department policy which blocks officials from testifying about private discussions with the President.

"I'm not able to invoke executive privilege, that's the president's prerogative", Sessions said.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is the arguably the most vulnerable member of President Donald Trump's cabinet.

Feinstein has said the Judiciary Committee should investigate, but had asked Grassley to keep the investigations separate. "Wyden, there are none", Sessions insisted, his voice rising.

Despite that recusal, he was involved in Trump's decision to fire former FBI Director James Comey, who was leading the Russian Federation probe.

"I do not", Sessions said when asked whether he knows whether the president records his conversations.

Not only did she push him to discuss his role in the firing James Comey despite having recused himself from the Russian Federation investigations - "this Russian Federation thing" being the reason Comey was sacked - Senator Dianne Feinstein also made it clear that Mr Sessions' choice to avoid answering some questions when he could just say no says a lot.

"I recused myself from any investigation into the campaigns for president, but I did not recuse myself from defending my honor against scurrilous and false allegations", he said.



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