The Senate Judiciary Committee is conducting a hearing to consider whether former Attorney General Jeff Sessions violated the law when he recused himself from the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and any potential ties between the Trump campaign and Moscow.
Sessions is expected to testify.
He’s scheduled to give the opening statement Thursday afternoon.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., told CNN that Sessions “should be a witness to this, should be a voice for the American people.”
He’s also expected to ask him about the Trump transition team’s contacts with Russians, including whether there was any collusion.
In a statement Thursday, Schumer said he’s worried that Sessions’ recusal would give a “black eye” to the probe into the Trump administration’s ties to Russia and that he’s not confident that it will lead to “convincing testimony from the Attorney General.”
“If he’s recused, it gives a voice to those who are not believed, to those the president has said are liars,” Schumer said.
“The President and his associates have repeatedly expressed support for Russian President Vladimir Putin, and it’s clear that Jeff Sessions is not a fit for the job of Attorney General of the United States.”
Schumer and Sen. Joe Manchin, D.W.
Va., are pushing for Sessions to testify, which Schumer called “very important.”
Trump’s former top lawyer, Robert Kelner, is scheduled to testify Thursday afternoon, the Senate Judiciary committee said in a statement.
Kelner was Sessions’ deputy during the presidential transition in 2016 and he served as an attorney general under President Donald Trump before leaving in 2020.
Santorum’s recusal comes after the Judiciary Committee issued a subpoena seeking information from Sessions on the Trump team’s ties with Russian officials.
The subpoena is part of a separate probe into Russian election interference that the committee launched in the wake of revelations in March that Trump campaign associates had communications with Russian operatives.
In his statement Thursday announcing Sessions’ appearance, Schumer urged Sessions to cooperate with the committee and explain his decision to recuse himself.
Schumer also said Sessions has a “responsibility to fully cooperate with any investigation of the Trump associates” and to “take all steps necessary to ensure that the Committee has the information necessary to complete its investigation.”