But Pegues reports the court documents unsealed this week claim George Papadopoulos, the former Trump campaign aide who pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his contacts with foreign nationals, offered to set up a meeting with then-candidate Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. "Completely unrelated to my limited volunteer role with the campaign and as I've done dozens of times throughout my life".
During his January confirmation hearing to become attorney general, Sessions told the Judiciary Committee that he had had no communication with Russian officials, only to have The Washington Post reveal in March that he had spoken twice with the Russian ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak.
President Donald Trump says he does not remember much about a meeting past year with a former campaign aide who pleaded guilty this month as part of a federal probe into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election. Al Franken, D-Minn., asked the attorney general nominee what he would do "if there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of this campaign".
Asked about a 2016 meeting that included former adviser George Papadopoulos, Trump told reporters: "I don't remember much about that meeting. Is that what you're saying?"
Sessions has been dogged over his testimony before Congress about interactions with Russians during the 2016 presidential campaign.
In a letter to Sessions on Thursday, Sen.More news: Far Right Commentator Banned From Uber And Lyft After Islamophobic Tweets
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"It might be worth writing a letter and saying 'What happened?' I wouldn't mind writing a letter, because he was pretty definitive he never had that discussion about Russia", Graham of SC said in an interview. "I am deeply troubled that this newest revelation strongly suggests that the Senate-and the American public-cannot trust your word". Many objected over the summer when Trump fumed at Sessions for recusing himself from the Russian Federation investigation and began hinting he would fire his attorney general.
"He needs to clarify his testimony before our committee", said Judiciary Committee member Senator Richard Blumenthal.
The person familiar with Sessions' activity during the campaign said his testimony has been truthful and consistent. Trump denies any collusion with Russian Federation and Moscow denies interfering in the 2016 USA election.
It is the latest example to emerge of a Trump aide meeting with Russian officials during the 2016 election after initially denying that such contacts occurred. The documents seem to show George Papadopoulos was the adviser who offered to set up the meeting.
Josh Chafetz, a professor at Cornell University Law School, said lawmakers could try to use "various other tools in the congressional arsenal", from reducing Justice Department appropriations to refusing to confirm appointees reporting to him.