Jeff Sessions Is Pretty Sure He Didn't Do Anything Wrong

Kristopher Drake
March 8, 2017

"It was not a gotcha question, sir", Franken shot back.

You might have thought the U.S. Senate confirmation hearings for President Trump's various political appointments would have all been wrapped up by now, but turns out, Trump still has a lot of positions in his cabinet to fill. Sessions said his meetings with Russian ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak were held in Sessions' capacity as a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. That recusal put the power to oversee any justice department investigation of Russia's interference in the hands of the yet-to-be-confirmed deputy attorney general.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is under fire for having lied about contacts with the Russian ambassador, leading to his recusal from any investigations about Russia. Franken's question about Sessions' possible machinations with Russians included these words: "claimed to have", "allegedly", "alleging", "if it's true".

If confirmed, Rosenstein would replace Dana Boente, now the acting deputy attorney general.

During his confirmation hearing, Rosenstein found himself at the center of partisan crossfire at the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Rosenstein, a respected prosecutor who has served five presidents, seemed unfazed by the attention.

Democratic senators pressed President Donald Trump's nominee for deputy attorney general Tuesday to support the naming of a special prosecutor to probe Russian interference in USA politics.

Rosenstein assured Durbin he would, on both counts.


Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said at Tuesday's hearing that Rosenstein has "impressive credentials" and she does not question his "integrity". In the questionnaire that he submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee, he listed a criminal prosecution that came out of that investigation as among the most significant cases he had handled in his career. While Republicans called for a special prosecutor to investigate the leaks - which included revelations on sensitive foreign intelligence operations - Democrats opposed a special prosecutor, and Holder defended Rosenstein's impartiality.

"I've thought a lot about his issue, senator".

Rosenstein said since he was not yet in the role, he had not seen the evidence and had no basis to decide whether a independent counsel would be appropriate.

Sessions recused himself last week from any investigations into President Donald Trump's campaign. "Moreover, it's the right thing to do to ensure that this investigation remains impartial, nonpartisan, and truly gets to the bottom of the matter". He also said former Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch did not appoint a special prosecutor amid the allegations.

In a letter Monday to the Senate Judiciary Committee supplementing his testimony, Sessions defended the answer and rejected the idea that he should have corrected his January 10 testimony later.

November 28. Rosenstein said the call was the first contact between the two, adding there were no discussions with Sessions on the topic of the former Alabama senator's communications with Russian Federation.

In the letter released by the Department of Justice on Monday, Sessions said he "did not mention communications had with the Russian ambassador over the years because the question did not ask about them".

He said that in retrospect he should have "slowed down" and acknowledged the meeting with one Russian official outside campaign activities.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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