Jeff Sessions defended his lie that he hadn’t talked to the Russians. His grounds? He said he took the question to refer to contacts he may have had as a proxy for the Trump campaign. In Sessions’ mind, his chats with the Russian ambassador were part of his senatorial duties and therefore did not merit a mention. A thin excuse, but let’s say – for the sake of charity – a sufficient one to excuse his prevarication.
Now even that weak attempt at justification wobbles and collapses. It seems Sessions traveled to the Republican National Convention on the Trump campaign’s dime. And while there, had a tête-à-tête with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian plenipotentiary to America.
Like all dissemblers, Sessions is diminished by the drip-drip of revelation. Should he have stood four-square at the get-go – and admitted all – he would have avoided looking like a weasel.
The lies don’t stop there. Sessions was castigated as a crusader against civil rights. He denied he was a bigot. During his confirmation hearings, he portrayed himself as dedicated to uplifting downtrodden minorities. He based such nobility on a claim that he had, as a U.S. Attorney, “personally” litigated four civil rights cases.
Lawyers who worked for Sessions at the time of his supposed civic mindedness stated his involvement was limited to signing the original complaints. Who is telling the truth? To help discover the answer, let’s consider that Sessions himself admitted he had never met one of the lawyers who worked on the cases. It’s hard to present yourself as a laborer in the pit when you can’t name your fellow miners.
Donald Trump garnered plaudits for looking ‘presidential’ during his address to Congress. The accolades didn’t last. To deflect attention from Sessions and his lies about meeting Kislyak, Trump tweeted a picture of Sen. Chuck Schumer and Vladimir Putin enjoying coffee and donuts together. He called Schumer “a total hypocrite” for slamming Sessions for what Schumer himself had done.
So let’s try this slowly for Trump fans. It wasn’t Sessions’ meetings; it was his lying. Next.
There was so much Republican enthusiasm for investigations during the Barack Obama administration it’s a wonder anything got done. Although on reflection, Congress didn’t do anything. So be it. Now there is a shiny new Russian scandal.
However, the administration is Republican. And the miscreants in question, members of the same gang. So Congress has rolled up its sleeves, girded its loins, and steeled themselves to take no action – except hide under the usual rocks.
Talking about investigations, it turns out that VP Mike Pence used private email to conduct official Indiana state business. Comparison to Hillary Clinton’s cavalier use of the same ensued. Pence pooh-poohs any similarity saying “there’s no comparison”. Sorry, Mike, there is.
Especially as it turns out that after his first private email account was compromised, he set up a second. Mistakes – they happen. Not learning from them – dumb.
The Russian thing has metastasized to the point where even Fox analysts are calling foul. Ret. Lt. Col. Ralph Peters alerted Fox viewers to Trump’s failure, “He can’t get over his adulation of Vladimir Putin”. Further, he says that Trump has to prove he isn’t beholden to Russia’s spooks by releasing his tax returns. So there’s that.