Jeff Sessions tells Senate panel he did not have third meeting with Russian ambassador

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions, testifying on Capitol Hill Tuesday, told the Senate Intelligence Committee that he had no third meeting with the Russian ambassador last year at a campaign event for Donald Trump.

The former Alabama senator was testifying on the Russia investigation, his contacts with Kremlin officials and his relationship with President Trump.

The former Alabama senator was testifying on the Russia investigation, his contacts with Kremlin officials and his relationship with Trump.

Sessions said he had “no recollection” of meeting Russian ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak at a Trump campaign event at Washington’s Mayflower Hotel, despite an FBI investigation over whether such a meeting took place.

He also angrily pushed back on any suggestion of collusion with Russians as an “appalling and detestable lie.”

Sessions’ appearance before Congress is the first since recusing himself from the Russia investigation. He took questions from Democrats on any role he had in the firing of FBI Director James Comey, which Trump later said was motivated by the investigations into Moscow’s meddling the last year’s elections.
As for his recusal, Sessions said it was “appropriate” to excuse himself from any investigations into Russian involvement in the election, but he did not recuse himself from “defending his honor.” was “nothing wrong” with Trump speaking in private with then-FBI Director Comey, whom he later fired. Comey had “expressed concerns” to the Attorney General about his discussions with Trump about the ongoing Russian investigations, and Sessions said he believed such talks were “problematic” and affirmed Comey’s concerns.
The Attorney General added that there was “nothing wrong” with Trump speaking in private with then-FBI Director Comey, whom he later fired. Comey had “expressed concerns” to the Attorney General about his discussions with Trump about the ongoing Russian investigations, and may have been “problematic.” Sessions said he affirmed Comey’s concerns.

Sessions also defended remarks he made to Minnesota Democratic Sen. Al Franken during his confirmation hearing.

“He asked me a rambling question that included dramatic, new allegations that the United States intelligence community had advised President-elect Trump that ‘there was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump’s surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government,'” Sessions said. “I was taken aback by these explosive allegations.”

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