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Sessions denies 'scurrilous' Russian Federation claims

Sessions denies 'scurrilous' Russian Federation claims

WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Jeff Sessions heatedly denied on Tuesday having an undisclosed meeting with Russia's ambassador to the USA and declared it was a "detestable and appalling lie" to suggest he was aware of or took part in any collusion between Russian Federation and the election campaign that sent Donald Trump to the White House.

Members of the Senate intelligence committee expressed confusion over why Attorney General Jeff Sessions would not disclose his conversations with the president.

"The suggestion that I participated in any collusion, that I was aware of any collusion with the Russian government, or hurt this country which I have served with honor for 35 years, or to undermine the integrity of our democratic process, is an appalling and detestable lie", Sessions said.

Rosenstein testified that he is the only one who has the authority to fire Mueller, who was appointed following the May 9 ousting of James Comey as Federal Bureau of Investigation director, and that he had seen no good cause to do so. Sessions told the committee he is protecting Trump's right to later on assert executive privilege "if he chooses". King noted that Sessions publicly testified about the administration's original justification for firing Comey - that he mishandled last year's probe into Hillary Clinton's private email server - but refused to discuss whether the Russian Federation probe was also a consideration.

Democrats on the committee attempted to ask Sessions whether the president had asked him or others to ditch the investigation. "I felt I was required to under the rules of the Department of Justice".

In March, Mr Sessions removed himself from any inquiry into alleged Russian interference in the elections.

Sessions, testifying under oath before the Senate Intelligence Committee yesterday, denied ever having any conversations with Russians about Russian election meddling - including at an event previous year at a Washington hotel that was attended by Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

The attorney general was forced to recuse himself in March from the federal investigation into Russian interference in the US election after media reports that he twice met with Kislyak during the 2016 campaign and did not disclose that to the Senate during his confirmation hearing in January. On June 13, Jeff Sessions had his turn in the hot seat, testimony that proves crucial when trying to understand President Donald Trump's relationship with Russian Federation. "What are they?" Wyden had asked.

"Disappointed that AG Sessions is refusing to answer relevant and proper questions - Americans want truth", he said.

Schumer's comments come on the heels of two other Democratic senators calling for Sessions' resignation.

Raising his voice, he said: "This is a secret innuendo being leaked there about me and I don't appreciate it".

"I've watched that video so many times", said Flores.

"Why did you sign the letter recommending the firing of Director Comey when it violated your recusal?" Mueller also won votes of support Tuesday from the top two Republicans in Congress, House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, both of whom said they have confidence in him.

He called accusations of collusion "an appalling and detestable lie" and derided the suggestion last week by Comey that there were "problematic" issues that forced Sessions to recuse himself from the Russian Federation probe.

The Attorney-General cited what he claimed was a Justice Department policy to keep conversations with the President confidential, but critics say no such policy exists.

The same thing happened last week when McCain first interrupted Harris to ask her to let Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein answer the question posed. "It's not only highly unusual, but I'm not sure it's appropriate", Mr. Cramer, a security and business consultant with Berkeley Research Group, said in an interview.

Mr Sessions, in his first public testimony on Capitol Hill since his January confirmation hearing, suggested he's only aware of the intelligence community's conclusion that Russian Federation attempted to undermine the election because of media reports.

Sessions refused to answer some questions saying his conversations with the president were privileged, drawing fire from some Democratic Senators. Richard Burr, R-N.C., said he would control the hearing and the witness should be allowed to answer questions. Patrick Leahy was not happy about.

On another hot-button issue, Sen.


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