Sessions' testimony to Congress Tuesday to be open to public

Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office in Washington. Sessions whose contacts with Russia's ambassador to the U.S. during the presidential campaign has sparked questions agree

Is it too cynical to suggest that Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III must have decided on a plausible set of lies, evasions, and half-truths about Donald Trump and Russian Federation and obstruction of justice and his own contacts with Russian Federation?

A DOJ statement said Sessions wanted the hearing to be public because "he believes it is important for the American people to hear the truth directly from him and looks forward to answering the committee's questions tomorrow".

To return to my opening question with another rhetorical question, is it even possible to be too cynical about anything in Donald Trump's orbit?

Sessions won't be able to tell senators what went on in the meeting - the president had ordered him out of the Oval Office, along with other officials, before speaking privately with Comey, according to Comey's testimony.

Comey also has said Sessions did not respond when he complained he didn't "want to get time alone with the president again".

The abrupt schedule change follows blockbuster testimony last week from former FBI Director James B. Comey. While the hearing will be held in public, there has been no time scheduled - at least as of Monday morning - for Sessions to stick around and testify in a closed hearing to discuss classified matters, according to those aides, who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter. These probes have led to terrible optics for the administration, if nothing else, after James Comey said in March that the feds are looking into whether the President's campaign colluded with these efforts.

There is a way that Sessions could skirt around having to directly answer these questions, however.

Sessions, according to media accounts, was closely involved in pushing Trump to fire Comey - and Sessions has also been implicated in the Russia scandal due to meetings he held during the campaign previous year with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak - at a time when Russian intelligence operatives were actively involved in hacking and manipulating the USA presidential election to tilt it in favor of Trump and to manage Democrat Hillary Clinton.


The announcement caps the drama that started over the weekend when Sessions canceled two appearances Tuesday, citing former Comey's blistering testimony last week.

The public hearing was announced Monday by Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr and Vice Chairman Mark Warner.

"As NPR's Carrie Johnson recently reported on All Things Considered: "[Sources] are telling me Trump has been very angry with Jeff Sessions for recusing himself in the Russian Federation investigation to begin with, lots of profane conversations and yelling.

Sessions has been dogged by questions about possible additional encounters with the ambassador, Sergey Kislyak. He said under oath at his January confirmation hearing that he had not met with Russians during the campaign. "We've obviously pressed the White House", he said. Sessions was originally scheduled to defend the Justice Department's fiscal 2018 budget request to House and Senate appropriators this week, but told the committees in a letter late Friday that he would instead meet with Senate Intelligence.

Sessions will be testifying before Congress for the first time since he was confirmed as attorney general in February. "And - but I did not tell him about the Flynn part".

"I think he's considering perhaps terminating the special counsel".

The White House, the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation did not respond immediately to requests for comment. He will also likely be asked if he knows of any ties between anyone in Trump's campaign who may have coordinated with the Russians, and if there is any suggestion of obstruction of justice by the president following the firing of national security adviser Michael Flynn.

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