11.02.17

Leahy: AG Sessions Must Return To Judiciary Committee For Under-Oath Testimony To Address New Revelations

[On Monday, unsealed court records revealed that George Papadopoulos – former foreign policy advisor to the Trump campaign – pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about interactions with Russian agents during the 2016 campaign.  Court documents show that there was a March 31, 2016, “national security meeting” in Washington, D.C., involving candidate Trump and other advisors, where Papadopoulos explained that he had connections to the Russian government and he offered to “help arrange a meeting between then-candidate Trump and [Russian] President Putin.” Then-Senator Sessions, serving as chairman of the campaign’s national security team, also attended this meeting, sitting just a few seats away from Papadopoulos.  Sessions reportedly “shut down” Papadopoulos and asserted that the topic should not be discussed again.  Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a leading member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, has confronted the Attorney General in two hearings this year about his communications with individuals with connections to the Russian government in the context of concerns that members of the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin in its efforts to elect Donald Trump.  Leahy’s statement follows:]    

“Attorney General Sessions needs to come back before the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The description of the March 2016 meeting contained in unsealed court documents is impossible to reconcile with the Attorney General’s appearance before the Judiciary Committee just two weeks ago.  In that hearing, he again testified under oath that he was not aware of any communications between individuals affiliated with the Trump campaign and Russian officials.  The Attorney General was already given an opportunity to correct his earlier misleading answers to me and Senator Franken in January through written, supplemental testimony.  Yet he only continued to mislead.  He now needs to come back before the Committee, in person, under oath, to explain why he cannot seem to provide truthful, complete answers to these important and relevant questions.” 

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