Attorney General Jeff Sessions to testify in public on Tuesday
- Author: Salvatore Jensen Jun 13, 2017,
Jun 13, 2017, 13:22
After Sessions' sudden announcement over the weekend that he would appear before the committee, there had been confusion about whether he would testify publicly or in private.
It remains unclear whether the Tuesday hearing will be open to the public.
Members of both the Senate and House intelligence committees have insisted since that hearing that it is important they verify Comey's testimony.
Sessions told lawmakers at his January confirmation hearing that he had not met with Russians during the campaign.
The Justice Department ultimately agreed to a Tuesday public hearing in an attempt to show there's nothing to hide and nothing controversial about Sessions' interactions with Russian officials, officials said. But senators on the committee are expected to question Sessions about his meetings with Russians - a topic that has come under increased scrutiny amid investigations into Russia's interference in the USA election. This was to have followed up on former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey's testimony last week. Did Sessions suspect that Trump was trying to interfere in the FBI's various investigations of Flynn and Russian meddling?
Comey's remarks drew an angry response from the president on Friday accusing Comey of lying. Barring the emergence of evidence such as a surreptitious recording of the conversation - Trump tweeted that Comey had better hope there are no tapes - deciding which of the two men's accounts is factual may depend on which details most accurately reflect others' recollections.
Spicer is also refusing to say whether tapes exist of the president's conversations with FBI Director James Comey before Trump fired him.
"I don't understand why the president just doesn't clear this matter up once and for all", said Sen.
She describes Comey's testimony as "candid" and "thorough" and says she would support a subpoena of any tapes if needed. Senator James Lankford (R-OK), Senate Intelligence Committee.
In his testimony, Comey said that he could not go to Sessions with his concerns about President Donald Trump's attempts to stop the Russia investigation because he knew that Sessions was about to be exposed as acting on the Russian government's behalf and was therefore not to be trusted.
It is not the first time DOJ has had to correct or contradict Mr. Comey. This was denied by the Justice Department in a statement.
Although Sessions claimed he didn't disclose the meetings because he considered them part of his Senate business, not Trump campaign business, he opted to recuse himself from the FBI's investigation into possible collusion between the Trump team and Russian officials. Comey was leading that probe. It's important that the Senate Judiciary Committee, in addition to the Intelligence Committee, take a look at the Trump campaign's behavior and the ongoing cover-up.
Adding to the tension for the White House are fast-approaching deadlines in Congress to approve a health care bill before a September 30 deadline and agree on a tax reform plan - both top campaign promises, which appear to be longshots.