Senate Dems demand Sessions clarify testimony on Russian Federation

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Senate Dems demand Sessions clarify testimony on Russian Federation

"I don't make anything sinister out of it", Conaway told CNN.

The same documents that disclosed the meeting show Papadopoulos has pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his contact with Russians during the 2016 campaign. Papadopoulos made the offer during a meeting that both Sessions and Mr. Trump attended in March 2016. In the plea deal documents released by Mueller on Monday, Papadopoulos recounted a meeting in which he suggested setting up a meeting with then-candidate Trump and some Russians he knew with potentially damaging information about Clinton.

Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election and whether anyone on the Trump campaign coordinated with Russian officials during the race is the subject of a law enforcement investigation headed by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Democratic Senators Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) and Patrick Leahy (Vt.) issued statements demanding Sessions testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Papadopoulos said in the email that he was acting "to arrange a meeting between us and the Russian leadership to discuss U.S. -Russia ties under President Trump", court records indicate. Sessions, who is now the United States attorney general and was an early supporter of Trump's campaign, to say hello and mentioned he was headed to Russian Federation.

However, CNN reported on Thursday that John Cornyn, the second-ranking Senate Republican, who serves on the intelligence and judiciary committees, said that he had been unaware that Sessions was at the meeting.

Sessions repeated that claim in written testimony to the committee, despite multiple meetings with the Russian envoy Sergey Kislyak during the campaign. But on Thursday, the person familiar with Sessions' recollections said, "the attorney general has no clear recollection of this person".

"Sessions should come back before [the Senate Judiciary Committee]", Schumer said on The Rachel Maddow Show.

Last month, Sessions told the same committee he was not aware of any Trump surrogates having contacts with Russian officials.

In an eight-page letter to Sessions on Thursday, Senator Al Franken recalled that the attorney general said at an October 18 Judiciary Committee hearing that a continuing exchange between the Trump campaign and Russian government intermediaries "did not happen, at least not to my knowledge and not with me".

"I think there are many more questions for Jeff Sessions", said Sen.

"What happens if you get a new Attorney General - and the Democrats can't blame the president because they are the ones pushing them out - and then this new guy comes and says, 'Guess what?"

The Justice Department declined to comment, and Trump denies any collusion.

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