Although Attorney General Jeff Sessions has officially clarified his statements about his meetings with Russian government officials during the 2016 presidential campaign, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) is still not satisfied.
During the Senate confirmation hearing of U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein for the position of deputy attorney general on Tuesday, Franken delivered a scathing rebuke of Sessions’s clarification that he said was “insulting” to his former colleagues in the Senate.
While questioning Rosenstein during his confirmation, Franken read some excerpts from Sessions’s letter and pointed out that the attorney general’s responses were woefully inadequate.
“He says [in his letter], ‘I did not mention communications I had with the Russian ambassador over the years because the question did not ask about them,'” Franken noted. “I asked him what he would do as attorney general if it was true that members of the [Trump] campaign had met with the Russians. So he says, ‘I did not mention communications I had with the Russian ambassador over the years because the question did not ask about them.'”
Franken at this point was just getting warmed up.
“He answered a question I didn’t ask, and for him to put this in his letter as a response is insulting, and he should come back and explain himself, Mr. Chairman,” said Franken. “I think he owes that to us. Because this appears to me like he was — and I have been, I’ve bent over backward not to say that he lied.”
Watch the whole exchange below.