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-   -   Attorney General Sessions is in Serious Trouble (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=317462)

Crossbow 2nd March 2017 07:31 AM

Attorney General Sessions is in Serious Trouble
 
Hello all!

I have not seen this posted yet, so I thought I would do so now.

When then Senator Jeff Sessions was interviewed in the Senate by his fellow senators a few weeks to discuss his appointment as Attorney General, Jeff Sessions actually swore under oath that he did not have any contact with any Russians during the course of the presidential campaign.

However, now it turns out that Jeff Sessions had two different meetings with the Russian ambassador during the course of the presidential campaign.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slate..._campaign.html
Quote:

Then-Sen. Jeff Sessions spoke with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. twice last year in apparent contradiction to what the Republican Alabama senator said during his attorney general confirmation hearings, the Washington Post reported Wednesday. Sessions acted as an early surrogate for Donald Trump and met with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak privately in his Senate office in September, according to the Post, while Russia was simultaneously engaged in an expansive effort to influence the U.S. election. The second meeting occurred in July at an event on the sidelines of the Republican National Convention held by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. Sessions spoke informally with Ambassador Kislyak and several other ambassadors after giving a speech at the event, according to the Justice Department.


There are already some calls for Sessions to resign and other calls for Sessions to at least recuse himself from the issue of Russian hacking during the last presidential campaign.

Additionally, this issue may require the appointment of a special prosecutor since to handle the Russian hacking case since the Attorney General cannot be trusted to handle this case.

Upchurch 2nd March 2017 07:35 AM

http://www.internationalskeptics.com...1#post11739521

But yeah, kind of a big deal.

The Don 2nd March 2017 07:37 AM

It's been mentioned in various threads.

IMO there's enough wriggle-room in his statements so that he hasn't actually lied.

Others have suggested that he was merely fulfilling his obligations as a senior member of the senate defense committee.

If he's important enough to Trump and/or the GOP then he will escape serious censure.

If he isn't, then he may be thrown under the bus.

ponderingturtle 2nd March 2017 07:45 AM

Lying under oath is only a problem when democrats do it. Get with the program.

Regnad Kcin 2nd March 2017 07:48 AM

Did Sessions receive a blowjob from the Russian ambassador? No? Well, all is hunky dory then.

TragicMonkey 2nd March 2017 07:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Regnad Kcin (Post 11740135)
Did Sessions receive a blowjob from the Russian ambassador? No? Well, all is hunky dory then.

Receive? Of course not.

The_Animus 2nd March 2017 08:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 11740107)

If he's important enough to Trump and/or the GOP then he will escape serious censure.

This. He is a shield for any unethical and/or illegal activity on their part. They will do everything they can to keep him.

I Am The Scum 2nd March 2017 09:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 11740107)
IMO there's enough wriggle-room in his statements so that he hasn't actually lied.

I disagree.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sessions
I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians.

But let's look at this in the most generous light. He is not denying that the contact took place. His excuse is that it was official state business, but apparently, he meant to answer Franken's question in light of campaign duties. If I were in his place, I would be working with all haste to present evidence that this was public work, not private. There's got to be a schedule that will back him up, or an e-mail, or even a quick TV appearance from one of his staffers.

I seriously doubt any of this will be forthcoming.

Newtons Bit 2nd March 2017 09:46 AM

Looks like perjury to me.

theprestige 2nd March 2017 09:58 AM

I'm waiting to see if this is serious trouble, or just more bargaining-phase "this one is the really super serious one that will finally destroy the whole Trump thing for real this time!" type stuff from the same people who previously hoped that "but his hands are stubby and small!" would do the trick.

ponderingturtle 2nd March 2017 10:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by theprestige (Post 11740377)
I'm waiting to see if this is serious trouble, or just more bargaining-phase "this one is the really super serious one that will finally destroy the whole Trump thing for real this time!" type stuff from the same people who previously hoped that "but his hands are stubby and small!" would do the trick.

Look if you can insult veterans and be clear that hispanics are unqualified to be judges this is nothing for Trump. At most he will need to find a new attorney general to fight against voting rights.

phiwum 2nd March 2017 10:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by theprestige (Post 11740377)
I'm waiting to see if this is serious trouble, or just more bargaining-phase "this one is the really super serious one that will finally destroy the whole Trump thing for real this time!" type stuff from the same people who previously hoped that "but his hands are stubby and small!" would do the trick.

It seems pretty plausible that Sessions lied during his hearing. This won't destroy Trump by itself, surely. At worst, it will end Sessions as AG and even that's not obvious.

But you certainly do build a mighty fine straw man. I like the hat in particular. I'm kinda curious who thought that small hands would end Trump, aside from maybe the Rubio campaign.

NoahFence 2nd March 2017 10:17 AM

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/wo...-a7607206.html

Dr. Keith 2nd March 2017 10:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NoahFence (Post 11740416)

For those who don't click: Video of sessions talking about the seriousness of Clinton being accused of perjury.

Spindrift 2nd March 2017 10:38 AM

I'm sure the administration is consulting Uncle Vlad on how to handle this.

"Arrange a few car accidents, suicides with 3 or 4 bullets to the head and some poisonings and you'll be good."

jeffas69 2nd March 2017 11:12 AM

Jeff Sessions should resign.

Skeptic Ginger 2nd March 2017 11:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TragicMonkey (Post 11740159)
Receive? Of course not.

:D

Minoosh 2nd March 2017 11:38 AM

Al Franken's question was rambling and if Sessions had stuck to answering it he would have been fine (granted I haven't seen the whole context). Sessions just had to give a less direct answer (or a startlingly more direct answer).

How does the head of an agency "recuse" himself, anyway? It's not like being before a judge, where it can be handed off to another judge. The agency head is an administrator of a gigantic organization. Maybe Comey would be swayed by Sessions saying "let it drop," but would he really do it? And a special prosecutor would be out of his chain of command, presumably. Not convinced those guys are independent either, though.

Sessions could say he would rigorously address causes for concern, or he could say, "You know, I actually met the Russian ambassador twice, but never did more than shake hands and exchange pleasantries."

It would be so cool if Lindsay Graham had set him up. Graham may deeply disappoint me some day but so far I like him.

pgwenthold 2nd March 2017 11:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by I Am The Scum (Post 11740335)
I disagree.


But let's look at this in the most generous light. He is not denying that the contact took place. His excuse is that it was official state business, but apparently, he meant to answer Franken's question in light of campaign duties. If I were in his place, I would be working with all haste to present evidence that this was public work, not private. There's got to be a schedule that will back him up, or an e-mail, or even a quick TV appearance from one of his staffers.

I seriously doubt any of this will be forthcoming.

The interesting part about his answer to Franken, which actually was NOT an answer to Franken's question but a statement made in response to Franken's question, is that he explicitly called himself a "surrogate" of Trump. Therefore, Mike Huckabee's daughter's claim that it was just part of doing business as a senator doesn't hold up. He admits he is a Trump surrogate.

He caused the problem here. He could have addressed Franken's question, but he volunteered the information. It would have been real easy to say, "As a Senator, I have to deal with a lot of people, and that includes Russians. However, that is always on State business."

Or he could have not said anything about his interactions with Russia, because he was never asked about them.

Spindrift 2nd March 2017 11:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pgwenthold (Post 11740552)
The interesting part about his answer to Franken, which actually was NOT an answer to Franken's question but a statement made in response to Franken's question, is that he explicitly called himself a "surrogate" of Trump. Therefore, Mike Huckabee's daughter's claim that it was just part of doing business as a senator doesn't hold up. He admits he is a Trump surrogate.

He caused the problem here. He could have addressed Franken's question, but he volunteered the information. It would have been real easy to say, "As a Senator, I have to deal with a lot of people, and that includes Russians. However, that is always on State business."

Or he could have not said anything about his interactions with Russia, because he was never asked about them.

Maybe he should listen to the standard lawyer's advice. Answer only the question asked and as briefly as possible and then shut up. I wonder if he has any lawyers in the family.

pgwenthold 2nd March 2017 11:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Spindrift (Post 11740557)
Maybe he should listen to the standard lawyer's advice. Answer only the question asked and as briefly as possible and then shut up. I wonder if he has any lawyers in the family.

Oh come on, he was only being interviewed for Attorney General. How could you expect him to know anything about lawyer stuff?

Minoosh 2nd March 2017 11:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pgwenthold (Post 11740552)
Or he could have not said anything about his interactions with Russia, because he was never asked about them.

The surrogate part struck me as well.

ETA: Sessions' answer strikes me as a kind of "tell" used to see if someone is being deceptive. Elaborating unnecessarily on a question.

Spindrift 2nd March 2017 11:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pgwenthold (Post 11740559)
Oh come on, he was only being interviewed for Attorney General. How could you expect him to know anything about lawyer stuff?

He's been a politician for too long where the standard is to answer anything except the question asked and talk for as long as possible.

Skeptic Ginger 2nd March 2017 11:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Minoosh (Post 11740551)
Al Franken's question was rambling and if Sessions had stuck to answering it he would have been fine (granted I haven't seen the whole context). Sessions just had to give a less direct answer (or a startlingly more direct answer).

How does the head of an agency "recuse" himself, anyway? It's not like being before a judge, where it can be handed off to another judge. The agency head is an administrator of a gigantic organization. Maybe Comey would be swayed by Sessions saying "let it drop," but would he really do it? And a special prosecutor would be out of his chain of command, presumably. Not convinced those guys are independent either, though.

Sessions could say he would rigorously address causes for concern, or he could say, "You know, I actually met the Russian ambassador twice, but never did more than shake hands and exchange pleasantries."

It would be so cool if Lindsay Graham had set him up. Graham may deeply disappoint me some day but so far I like him.

You don't appear to understand how recusal in this case would work. Sessions would be barred from hearing anything about the ongoing investigation. He'd be blocked from hearing whatever evidence was being discussed.

As for Franken rambling, that's BS.

marplots 2nd March 2017 11:54 AM

I'm having a hard time with this whole, "meeting with the Russians" thing. Ambassadors meet with principals in other governments. It's kind of their job.

pgwenthold 2nd March 2017 11:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Minoosh (Post 11740561)
The surrogate part struck me as well.

ETA: Sessions' answer strikes me as a kind of "tell" used to see if someone is being deceptive. Elaborating unnecessarily on a question.

As an instructor, students answering the question not asked is usually a sign that they don't know the answer to the question that WAS asked, and so they bluster hoping to get partial credit.

applecorped 2nd March 2017 11:55 AM

Sessions is no Clapper

pgwenthold 2nd March 2017 11:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger (Post 11740570)
You don't appear to understand how recusal in this case would work. Sessions would be barred from hearing anything about the ongoing investigation. He'd be blocked from hearing whatever evidence was being discussed.

As for Franken rambling, that's BS.

Well, he rambled a bit in the set-up, but it is obvious that he did it because he wanted to make it clear that he wasn't accusing anyone of anything. But in terms of the question, it was straight-forward.

Giordano 2nd March 2017 12:04 PM

To me it is obvious that he committed perjury by any interpretation of his testimony. To parse this as any short of overt lying under oath requires an incredible willingness to allow him to take the clear word-by-word meaning of his statements and to change it retrospectively by adding provisos and context not present in the original statements.

One might avoid perjury charges by being slyly specific:
"Oh no Senator, I never stole money from any sick old person!"
If it later turns out he only stole from healthy young ones he didn't commit perjury.

But in Sessions' case it was more like:
"Oh,, no Senator, I never stole money from anyone!""

"But I have proof that you did!"

"Oh, I meant not from any sick old person. Only heathy young ones. Weren't we talking about sick old people awhile ago? Yeah, yeah, that's what I thought we were referring to. Sure. I just didn't bother to put that into my actual statement when I said "any." Any in my dictionary actually means only.. only the sick and old."

As I see it anyone means anyone. And this is our Attorney General, right???

It really makes Bill Clinton's interpretation of the word "sex" seem convincing by comparison.

Of course if Session ever has to answer for it will be determined by the highest law of the nation (and of almost any nation): the powerful and wealthy are not like the rest of us and they protect their own.

Giordano 2nd March 2017 12:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marplots (Post 11740582)
I'm having a hard time with this whole, "meeting with the Russians" thing. Ambassadors meet with principals in other governments. It's kind of their job.

No one is faulting the Russian ambassador. Nor is the problem per se with Sessions having done so (although it is important to note that members of the Armed Services Committee, such as he was, nearly never meet with foreign ambassadors, making the meetings under discussion more than a little suspicious). The real problem is that Sessions lied about it, and under oath.

ChristianProgressive 2nd March 2017 12:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 11740107)
Others have suggested that he was merely fulfilling his obligations as a senior member of the senate defense committee.

http://thehill.com/homenews/news/321...an-ambassadors

ChristianProgressive 2nd March 2017 12:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffas69 (Post 11740510)
Jeff Sessions should resign.

The entire Trump regime should be arrested, tried, and sentenced for treason.

ChristianProgressive 2nd March 2017 12:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marplots (Post 11740582)
I'm having a hard time with this whole, "meeting with the Russians" thing. Ambassadors meet with principals in other governments. It's kind of their job.

Ambassadors meet with other ambassadors. They don't meet directly with members of the other government's government (legislatures, judiciary, appointed ministers/Secretaries, etc).

phiwum 2nd March 2017 12:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive (Post 11740631)
The entire Trump regime should be arrested, tried, and sentenced for treason.

We really haven't any good evidence of treason, for goodness' sake!

Let's wait and see what comes up. The intelligence services seem to be doing their jobs.

alfaniner 2nd March 2017 12:28 PM

carp, wrong thread...

Horatius 2nd March 2017 12:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Minoosh (Post 11740551)
How does the head of an agency "recuse" himself, anyway? It's not like being before a judge, where it can be handed off to another judge. The agency head is an administrator of a gigantic organization.



This wouldn't be a problem in properly run organization. He'd assign one of his deputies to do the job, with instructions not to communicate anything about the case until it is ultimately settled. He'd also make sure that everyone working for that deputy understood the same thing, that the Deputy was the ultimate person in charge for this case.

Then, the really hard part, he'd actually have to keep his hands off it and let the Deputy and the staff do their jobs, without interference.

But that's how a properly run organization would do it, and as we all know, this administration is instead a "well-oiled machine", so they're pretty much screwed.

Crossbow 2nd March 2017 12:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marplots (Post 11740582)
I'm having a hard time with this whole, "meeting with the Russians" thing. Ambassadors meet with principals in other governments. It's kind of their job.

In this case, however, Sessions lied (while under oath, no less) about not meeting the Russian ambassador during a period of time when Sessions was busily helping Trump win the upcoming election at a time when it was clear that the Russians were also helping Trump to win the upcoming election.

The thing smells like a serious case of collusion which could be serious trouble for both Sessions and possibly Trump himself.

ChristianProgressive 2nd March 2017 12:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Horatius (Post 11740653)
This wouldn't be a problem in properly run organization. He'd assign one of his deputies to do the job, with instructions not to communicate anything about the case until it is ultimately settled. He'd also make sure that everyone working for that deputy understood the same thing, that the Deputy was the ultimate person in charge for this case.

Then, the really hard part, he'd actually have to keep his hands off it and let the Deputy and the staff do their jobs, without interference.

But that's how a properly run organization would do it, and as we all know, this administration is instead a "well-oiled machine", so they're pretty much screwed.

This is a classic "Special Prosecutor" situation.

jeffas69 2nd March 2017 12:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ChristianProgressive (Post 11740631)
The entire Trump regime should be arrested, tried, and sentenced for treason.

You know what they say about opinions, everyone has them. You should stop typing. I know that won't happen either.

phiwum 2nd March 2017 12:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Horatius (Post 11740653)
This wouldn't be a problem in properly run organization. He'd assign one of his deputies to do the job, with instructions not to communicate anything about the case until it is ultimately settled. He'd also make sure that everyone working for that deputy understood the same thing, that the Deputy was the ultimate person in charge for this case.

Then, the really hard part, he'd actually have to keep his hands off it and let the Deputy and the staff do their jobs, without interference.

But that's how a properly run organization would do it, and as we all know, this administration is instead a "well-oiled machine", so they're pretty much screwed.

"Fine tuned". I only correct you because what Trump actually said is grating, whereas what you said was grammatically correct. "Well" is an adverb. "Fine" is not an adverb.


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