Under fire, Sessions denies any Russian collusion

"I was your colleague in this body for 20 years, and the suggestion that I participated in any collusion or that I was aware of any collusion with the Russian government to hurt this country, which I have served with honor over 35 years, or to undermine the integrity of our democratic process is an appalling and detestable lie", he said. "It makes me nervous". During Comey's appearance before the committee last week, Sen. Comey testified in a Senate hearing last week that he believed he was sacked "because of the Russian Federation investigation". Ruddy's remarks came on the heels of Trump loyalists growing louder with their calls that Mueller should be removed from heading up the Russian Federation probe.

"I find that pretty disturbing...about something that's really very serious and is going to be serious in the coming elections". Importantly, Sessions said Trump had not yet asserted executive privilege, and he himself had no power to claim it.

Sidlow wonders why Senators didn't question Sessions over why he said Comey's firing came because the Federal Bureau of Investigation was in disarray.

But the underlying facts and information remained out of public view during the three-hour Capitol Hill hearing. Grassley's office said the letter is in response to a recent letter from Feinstein requesting that the committee seek details from senior Federal Bureau of Investigation leadership about Comey's interactions with President Donald Trump before he was sacked.

King said he was very disappointed in Sessions' answers to his questions.

Comey said he believed Mueller would look into Trump for obstruction of justice.

The Post quoted five people briefed on the requests, saying those who agreed to be interviewed include national intelligence director Daniel Coats, Admiral Mike Rogers who heads the NSA, and his recently departed deputy, Richard Ledgett.

Some Democrats grew impatient, warning Sessions was stonewalling on vital issues.

"The other thing that was really troubling that didn't get as much publicity, I asked, 'Did you ever get a briefing on what the Russians did?'...and he said, 'No, I only know what I read in the papers, '" the Senator from Maine explained.

"We have a right to have full and robust debate within the Department of Justice and encourage people to speak up and argue cases on different sides", he said.

Sessions said he had no recollection of speaking with Kislyak at the meeting, but said nothing inappropriate would have been discussed if they had met.

Wyden said Sessions' answer "doesn't pass the smell test".

"Without in any way suggesting I had any conversations concerning pardons, totally apart from that", he told Feinstein, "there are privileges of communication within the Department of Justice that we share, all of us do".

He told members the committee that the deputy attorney general has appointed a special counsel to investigate the matters related to the Russian interference in the 2016 election.

In a series of tweets during the hearing, U.S. Sen. He said he had no conversations about that finding with President Trump either.

Sessions pushed back on several statements made by Comey in his testimony last week, including Comey's assertion that Sessions shrugged off his concerns about being left alone with Trump.

When the committee gets an answer to that question, it will be a lot closer to getting to the bottom of the Russian Federation collusion allegation than it is today.

  • Leroy Wright