Jeff Sessions Didn't Exactly Give James Comey A Performance Review

Jeff Sessions Didn't Exactly Give James Comey A Performance Review

"I have never met with or had any conversations with any Russians or any foreign officials concerning any type of interference with any campaign or election in the United States", Sessions told a closely-watched hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Comey said that, following a routine counterterrorism briefing on February 14, Trump asked Sessions and others present to leave the Oval Office before urging the FBI director to back off the investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn's contacts with Russian officials, telling him, "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go".

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the person who would be responsible for carrying out any such dismissal, told a different congressional panel on Tuesday he would not fire Mueller without good cause and he had seen no such cause.

He also declined to say if Trump opposed Sessions' decision to recuse himself from the Russian Federation probe in March, and whether Justice Department officials discussed possible presidential pardons of individuals being looked at in the probe.

Then, perhaps unintentionally, Sessions referred to a possible third meeting between himself and the Russian ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak, which Comey had reportedly told senators about in a closed hearing.

Rhode argued that Sessions' recusal should have extended to Comey's firing.

Vice Chairman Sen. Mark Warner welcomes Sessions to the hearing, expresses concern regarding Sessions cancelling appearance before House and Senate Appropriations Committee.

The Attorney-General cited what he claimed was a Justice Department policy to keep conversations with the President confidential, but critics say no such policy exists.

Sessions' testimony did not provide any damaging new information on Trump campaign ties with Russian Federation or on Comey's dismissal, but his refusal to discuss conversations with Trump raised fresh questions about whether the White House has something to hide.

Heinrich told Sessions he was "obstructing" the congressional Russian Federation investigation by not answering questions, saying his silence "speaks volumes".

On The Late Show, Stephen Colbert called out Sessions for saying today he "doesn't recall" if former national security adviser Michael Flynn had contact with Russian officials.

"He said it was problematic, and I asked you what was problematic about it!"

"I'm not going to follow any orders unless I believe those are proper and appropriate orders", he said.

Mr Comey suggested this indicated the attorney general's awareness that it was improper for the president and Comey to meet alone together. He said the Federal Bureau of Investigation thought Sessions would soon recuse himself from the Russian Federation probe for a "variety of reasons" and wouldn't discuss it further in an open hearing.

As attorney general, Sessions is unlikely to answer in detail questions about conversations he's had with Trump.

The Attorney General laughed and smirked throughout his testimony, and got visibly upset during one part of his questioning.

The Justice Department and Sessions himself have pushed back on such suggestions.

When asked about what the basis was for his refusal to answer certain questions, Sessions said: "I am protecting the right of the president to assert it if he chooses and there may be other protections that apply".

Raising his voice, he said: "This is a secret innuendo being leaked there about me and I don't appreciate it".

"I don't know Sen".

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