Sessions cited the unnamed policy to deflect questions about how President Trump dealt with the Russian Federation inquiry and the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Comey was sacked in May at Sessions's recommendation, prompting widespread speculation that the Federal Bureau of Investigation director's removal was created to scuttle or derail the Russian Federation probe.
Comey told the Senate panel last week that he had been made uncomfortable by the tone of Trump's remarks in the February 14 meeting in the Oval Office. Democrats pressed Sessions repeatedly to say if he had discussed Russian Federation and Comey with Mr. Trump, but didn't get very far about those conversations between Sessions and the President.
Sessions, a former Republican US senator and an early supporter of Trump, is expected to be asked to explain why he told senators in January he had no dealings with Russian officials a year ago while serving as a Trump adviser. Wyden said that answer didn't "Pass the smell test".
He said he recused himself from the Justice Department's Russian Federation investigation only because of a regulation to require the step because of his involvement in the Trump campaign. Sessions became attorney general in February but did not recuse himself from that probe until March.
"I recused myself from any investigation into the campaigns for President, but I did not recuse myself from defending my honor against scurrilous and false allegations".
Then, perhaps unintentionally, Sessions referred to a possible third meeting between himself and the Russian ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak, which Comey had reportedly told senators about in a closed hearing. Days after that, Sessions also corrected his confirmation hearing testimony to inform the committee about his two meetings with Kislyak.More news: 'You're Impeding This Probe': Senator Accuses Sessions of Obstruction
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"I am not stonewalling", Sessions said. "President, I can't talk about that, '" Sessions testified.
Comey contended last week that he specifically asked Sessions not to allow him to be left alone with Trump.
He said while Trump has not invoked executive privilege, he was seeking to protect "the right of the president to assert it if he chooses". "It's not only highly unusual, but I'm not sure it's appropriate", Mr. Cramer, a security and business consultant with Berkeley Research Group, said in an interview.
"This is a secret innuendo being leaked out there about me, and I don't appreciate it", Sessions said, referring to media reports that Comey told lawmakers in a closed session that the Kislyak meeting would lead to Sessions' recusal from the Russian investigation.
"Sen. (Al) Franken asked me a rambling question after some six hours of testimony", Sessiona said. Mr. Trump acknowledged the sacking was motivated in part by the FBI's Russian Federation probe.
"I think so", Sessions replied.
"I'm not able to be rushed this fast", Sessions said. "I have confidence in Mr. Mueller", he said. "I do recall being one of the last ones to leave, I don't know how that occurred", he said.