It’s being alleged that Attorney General Jeff Sessions failed to properly disclose meetings with Russian officials. Who’s making this allegation? Well, that’d be the U.S. Justice Department.
According to a new report from CNN, the DOJ says Sessions did not disclose that he met Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak on multiple occasions when completing his security clearance forms. Sessions was asked to disclose any interactions he had with a “foreign government” in the past seven years. This sort of thing does no favors for a Trump administration that has a barrage of Russian involvement allegations to deal with already.
Speaking with CNN, Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores stated that she and her staff were told by the FBI (who have declined comment on CNN’s story) that Sessions did not need to list the meetings he had as a senator. The cable network spoke with a Washington attorney that specializes in national security law about the failure to disclose these meetings and provide his perspective.
“My interpretation is that a member of Congress would still have to reveal the appropriate foreign government contacts notwithstanding it was on official business,” said attorney Mark Zaid.
Jeff Sessions announced in March that he would be formally recusing himself from investigations into possible Russian ties within the Trump campaign.
UPDATE: Late Wednesday night, Justice Department spokesperson Ian Prior said that Sessions was advised the FBI not to disclose his meetings with the Russian ambassador: “As a United States senator, the attorney general met hundreds — if not thousands — of foreign dignitaries and their staff.”