Sessions facing Congress amid new Russia probe details

Sessions Denies Meeting With Russian Ambassador for Trump Campaign Issues

Sessions Denies Meeting With Ambassador for Trump Campaign

The appearance before the House Judiciary Committee follows a guilty plea from one Trump campaign aide who served on a foreign policy advisory council that Sessions chaired, as well as statements from another adviser who said he'd advised the then-GOP Alabama senator about an upcoming trip to Russian Federation. In that written statement, the former Trump campaign national security adviser claimed that he had told Sessions about "connections" he had that "could help arrange a meeting between then-candidate Trump and President Putin" in March of previous year.

Sessions said at the hearing on Tuesday that he forgot about the March 2016 meeting because the Trump campaign was "a form of chaos" from the beginning.

Sessions said at his January confirmation hearing that he would recuse himself from any investigations involving Clinton given his role as a vocal campaign surrogate to Trump.

The Kremlin has repeatedly denied allegations of interfering in the USA election and Trump denies any collusion between his campaign and Russian officials.

"My answer stands for itself, I guess", Sessions said.

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"And none of you had a part in the Trump campaign", Sessions said. "We do our duty everyday based on the facts". In his testimony before Congress Tuesday, Sessions tried to account for this apparent discrepancy.

Those claims have been denied by Clinton, who called them "baloney" and said there has been "no credible evidence [presented] by anyone".

Attorney General Jeff Sessions may have just thrown a wrench into GOP plans to open a new federal investigation of Hillary Clinton. Sessions said he no memory of that interaction.

"But I will not accept and reject accusations that I have ever lied under oath".

During the March 2016 campaign meeting where Russia was discussed, Sessions shut down Papadopoulos' idea of engaging with Russian contacts, according to a source familiar with the matter.

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Sessions' testimony about the independence of the DOJ stands in contrast with a letter the department sent to the House Judiciary Committee on Monday. "Is it proper, is that what you're asking?"

Sessions has asked Justice Department prosecutors to decide if a special counsel should be appointed to investigate certain Republican concerns, including alleged wrongdoing by the Clinton Foundation and the sale of a uranium company to Russian Federation, according to media reports on Monday.

Sessions again refused to answer, saying that "under the politics of the Department of Justice, to announce recusal in any investigation would reveal the existence of that investigation".

The list of matters he wanted probed was wide ranging, but included the FBI's handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state, various dealings of the Clinton Foundation and several matters connected to the purchase of the Canadian mining company Uranium One by Russia's nuclear energy agency. [John] Danforth took over that investigation as special counsel - and Mr. Mueller.

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