WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ talks with the Russian ambassador (all times local):
White House spokesman Sean Spicer is defending Attorney General Jeff Sessions — saying that Sessions was “100 percent straight” about his contacts with Russia during his Senate confirmation hearings.
Top Democrats are demanding that Sessions resign after the revelation that he had twice talked with Moscow’s U.S. envoy during the campaign.
Sessions’ conversations with the ambassador seem to contradict his sworn statements to Congress during his confirmation hearings.
Some Republicans are joining Democrats in calling on Sessions to step aside from a federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 White House election.
Spicer tells Fox News that “there’s nothing” for Sessions “to recuse himself” from.
Spicer says people are “choosing to play partisan politics” and “should be ashamed of themselves.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan says Attorney General Jeff Sessions should only recuse himself from a Justice Department investigation into Russian interference in the presidential election if Sessions is a subject of the probe.
Ryan says Congress has been “presented with no evidence that anyone on the Trump campaign or an American was involved in colluding with the Russians.”
Democrats have demanded Sessions’ resignation after the revelation that he had twice talked with Moscow’s U.S. envoy during the campaign. Sessions’ conversations seem to contradict Sessions’ sworn statements to Congress during his confirmation hearings.
Ryan says Republicans will “leave no stone unturned” in their own investigations of ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, which the House and Senate Intelligence Committees are conducting.
The top House Democrat says Attorney General Jeff Sessions lied under oath when he told the Senate Judiciary that he had no contacts with the Russian government and says he should resign.
Nancy Pelosi says, “Perjury is a crime.”
In the meantime, Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Marco Rubio of Florida joined a growing chorus of Republicans calling upon Sessions to recuse himself from any investigation on contacts between the Russians and President Donald Trump’s campaign last year. Graham says, “Somebody other than Jeff needs to do it.”
Graham also tells reporters he is meeting Thursday with FBI Director James Comey and will demand to know whether there is an investigation into the Russia contacts.