Attorney General Jeff Sessions immediately denied at his Senate Intelligence hearing that he met with Russian officials at the Mayflower Hotel in DC (or at least that he ‘didn’t recall’). But photos of the meeting show the opposite. Isn’t that Sessions and Sergey Kislyak standing next to each other?
Jeff Sessions, 70, testified in a public hearing in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee as the latest member of the Trump administration questioned under oath about Russian collusion in the election. Sessions appears before Congress for the first time since recusing himself from the investigation, and since FBI Director James Comey was fired by his suggestion. The former senator denied every accusation lobbied against him, claiming in his opening statement that he never met with Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak at the Mayflower Hotel in DC. Problem is that there are photos from that day that show just the opposite.
Sessions claimed he “did not have any private meetings nor do I recall any conversations with Russian officials at the Mayflower Hotel,” referring to accusations from Comey that he had a secret closed door meeting with Kislyak that he didn’t disclose during his confirmation hearing. “Let me state this clearly, colleagues, I have never met with or had any conversation with any Russians or any foreign officials concerning any type of interference with any campaign or election in the United States. Further I have no knowledge of any such conversations by anyone connected to the Trump campaign,” he told the committee.
He continued by calling allegations that he was involved in any Russian collusion an “appalling and detestable lie.” Sessions also defended his reason for recusal, telling the committee that bowing out of the investigation did not mean he was guilty of anything. “I recused myself, not because of any wrongdoing… but because of department regulation.” He argued that while he recused himself from the investigation, it didn’t bar him from “defending my honor.”
Sessions claims that he did not know at the time that Kislyak was at the Mayflower Hotel. He's lying. KISLYAK SAT IN FRONT OF HIM. pic.twitter.com/lp0IbNv7C6
— Avi Bueno (@JasperAvi) June 13, 2017
Rumors circulated last week that Sessions offered to resign because Trump blamed his recusal for intensifying the Russia investigation. Whether or not that’s true, Sessions shockingly agreed to testify voluntarily, and publicly. “[Sessions] believes it is important for the American people to hear the truth directly from him and looks forward to answering the committee’s questions tomorrow,” a Justice Department spokesperson said in a statement announcing his planned testimony.
Sessions revealing testimony comes less than a week after Comey’s bombshell hearing. The former FBI chief testified that he had a disturbing conversation with the president in which Trump apparently tried to persuade him to drop the investigation into former national security advisor Michael Flynn. Comey started taking down notes every time he met with Trump after the meeting, and referred to the memos. “This is a secret innuendo out being leaked out there about me, and I don’t appreciate it,” Sessions said.
HollywoodLifers, are you surprised that Sessions agreed to testify? Let us know.