By Ellen Nakashima | Washington Post
WASHINGTON – Attorney General Jeff Sessions will appear before the House Judiciary Committee next week and Democrats said Tuesday they plan to grill him about statements he has made that appear inconsistent with court filings in the special counsel’s probe on Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Sessions, who was a senior national security adviser to the Trump campaign, at his confirmation hearing in January stated he had no communications with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign. Special counsel Robert Mueller is examining, among other things, whether any members of the Trump team coordinated with the Russians to help Trump win the White House.
When it was later revealed that Sessions had met at least twice with the Russian ambassador, he then said the meetings were not about substantive campaign matters. That, too, was later contradicted.
Last month at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sessions said he had no communications with the Russians, and he was “not aware of anyone else [in the campaign] who did.”
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Then last week, a federal judge in D.C. unsealed court documents against former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos that appeared to contradict Sessions’s claims. One court document – part of the first set of charges filed by Mueller in the Russia probe – showed that in March 2016 Papadopoulos attended a national security meeting in Washington with Trump and other foreign policy advisers in which he said he had “connections that could help arrange a meeting between then-candidate Trump and [Russia] President Vladimir Putin.” Sessions was at the meeting.
Papadopoulos pleaded guilty on Oct. 5 to making false statements to the FBI.
“When you appear before our committee, we intend to ask you about these inconsistencies,” the panel’s 17 Democrats said in a letter sent to Sessions on Tuesday.
The court documents also stated that Papadopoulos was in regular touch with several senior campaign officials who determined that the campaign’s interaction with the Russian government should be confined to “someone low level in the campaign so as not to send any signal.”
The Democrats stated in their letter that “officials at the highest level in the campaign knew about Mr. Papadopoulos’ interactions with Russian officials . . . and hoped to hide those interactions from the public.”
Such facts, they said, “appear to contradict your …read more
Source:: East Bay – National & World