Attorney General Jeff Sessions used the majority of his testimony on Tuesday to communicate that any inference suggesting the Trump administration colluded with Russia was “an appalling and detestable lie.”
As a reminder, there are two investigations going on. One includes a Senate probe of Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, and a second separate investigation, spearheaded by former FBI Director, Robert Mueller.
Senate committee members were interested in grilling the attorney general regarding the circumstances surrounding the firing of former FBI Director James Comey and what transpired from Session’s meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
Recycle, Recuse, Reuse
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Sen. Richard Burr who bluntly asked Sessions why he recused himself from the Russia investigation.
Sessions named a Department of Justice regulation as the defining reason on his recusal. According to Sessions, a Justice Code of Federal regulations prohibits a DOJ attorney from participating in a criminal investigation or prosecution of anyone they have a personal or political relationship with.
Sen. Martin Heinrich tried to come through like a regulator, telling Sessions that he either answer the questions, answer in a closed session or evoke executive privilege to not answer the question.
“You ain’t got to lie to kick it”
The exchange between Sen. Ron Wyden and Sessions was very Karlie Redd & Joseline Hernandez like. Wyden set it up by summing up the American public’s fatigue with public officials and stonewalling.
“I am not stonewalling. I am following the historic policies of the department,” Sessions responded.
But when Wyden brought up Comey’s issues with Session’s recusal, things got litty.
Comey publicly stated that Sessions’ recusal was problematic but refused to answer any specific concerns during his public testimony last week. He did agree to do so in a closed forum.
Sessions seemed most concerned about how Comey spoke on his name (summon #MoreLife and @ChampagnePapi).
“But I’m sleep tho”
When Sen. Dianne Feinstein inquired about whether or not Comey discussed the reasonings surrounding Comey’s firing, Sessions went silent.
“I’m not able to confirm or discuss,” Comey answered regarding his conversation with President Trump.
Where are the receipts?
Sen. Kamala Harris did not come to play and asked Sessions if he refreshed his memory with notes or documents before his testimony. In case you forgot, Harris was a former prosecutor in California and served as the state’s attorney general before winning a Senate seat in 2016.
Harris told Sessions that he would need to provide any documentation or notes that he kept regarding the matter at hand if the committee required him to turn them over.
The two exchanged a few moments of cross talk and Harris was admonished by other committee members after Sessions said her failure to let him speak made him “nervous.”
This again prompted questions as Harris was previously interrupted last week by Sen. John McCain and Sen. Burr during Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s hearing last week.