Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has already recused himself today from any role in the investigation into Donald Trump’s Russia scandal, appears to be waiting to see whether the focus now shifts away from him before deciding whether to resign. But tonight’s latest stunning revelation about Sessions’ meeting with the Russian Ambassador may be enough to finish him off. And it comes down to this: follow the money.
When a grave crime has been committed, but the circumstances are murky enough to make it difficult to pin it down legally, if often comes down to the rules violations that just happened to have been committed in the process of committing that crime. In this instance it’s clear that Jeff Sessions was repeatedly colluding with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak on Donald Trump’s behalf. But without any record of what they discussed during these in-person meetings, it may be difficult to prove that Sessions was guilty of a conspiracy to rig the election. However, that may no longer matter.
It turns out Jeff Sessions used his own campaign funds to pay for his trip to the Republican National Convention, where he met with the Russian Ambassador. This nullifies Sessions’ current claim that he was attending the convention in his role as a sitting Senator, and not as a Donald Trump campaign adviser — but it would have been improper for him to have used campaign funds under those circumstances. And as a multi-decade Senator, he knows the rules.
Sessions also spoke on Trump’s behalf at an event during the convention, further cementing that he attended the 2016 convention as a Trump adviser, and not as a Senator. This revelation from the Wall Street Journal means that his latest semi-denial is now out the window. It leaves him to now try to come up with an even flimsier semi-denial in which he admits he met with the Ambassador as a Trump adviser but tries to claim he didn’t conspire with him. But he’s near the end of the excuse train. It now seems at least marginally probable that Jeff Sessions will have to resign as Attorney General, and more feasible that he’ll face some kind of legal punishment in the end. Help us investigate Trump-Russia!
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Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report