Attorney General Jeff Sessions is scheduled to testify in an open session before the Senate Intelligence Committee, beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET Tuesday.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ testimony before Congress
A CBS News Special Report will air live coverage of Sessions’ testimony. The broadcast will be hosted by Scott Pelley, starting Thursday at 2:30 p.m. ET. CBSN will also live stream Sessions’ testimony.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Senator Richard Burr, R-North Carolina, and Senator Mark Warner, D-Virginia, announced the details of the hearing on Monday, shortly after the Department of Justice announced that Sessions had requested his testimony be made public.
“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,” said a DOJ spokesperson in a statement on Monday.
Sessions announcedin letters to chairmen of the House and Senate appropriations subcommittees, where he had originally been scheduled to testify on Tuesday.
Having learned members of the subcommittee had planned to inquire about the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, Sessions decided it would be more appropriate to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee instead.
Previously, he had recused himself from the ongoing Russia investigation, admitting thatin 2016.
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Sessions is now expected to be asked about topics raised by former FBI Director James Comey during his testimony Thursday, including Sessions’ role in Comey’s firing, as well as the circumstances of his recusal. Comey said of Sessions Thursday that “We also were aware of facts that I can’t discuss in an open setting, that would make his continued engagement in a Russia-related investigation problematic.”
Some lawmakers consider Sessions’ willingness to appear before a public hearing a positive step toward getting clearer answers. Committee member Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, told reporters on Monday, “I think the sooner we can put some of the myths, rumors gossip behind us, the better we are.”
On “Face the Nation” on Sunday, Senator James Lankford, R-Oklahoma, echoed those concerns, saying that the committee hopes to get Sessions’ side of the issues at hand. “We’ve had a lot of unnamed sources in the media come out and make statements about Jeff Sessions. It would be very good to get it directly from him,” said Lankford.
Meanwhile, Senator Charles Schumer, D-New York, said he wants to hear directly from Sessions on whether he interfered in the Russia investigation before recusing himself, as well as his involvement in the firing of Comey.
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