Former Watergate assistant special prosecutor Nick Ackerman knows a thing or two about perjury — and according to him, Attorney General Jeff Sessions just made the case that he lied under oath that much easier for current special counsel Robert Mueller.
“Did Jeff Sessions roll the ball further away from perjury by the way he defended himself today?” MSNBC host Ari Melber asked Ackerman.
“No, I think he brought it closer to perjury,” the former Watergate counsel replied. “Perjury’s a very difficult crime to convict people of, because you’ve got to get in the person’s mind as to whether the were telling the truth.”
Nonetheless, Ackerman said “Jeff Sessions has made it a lot easier for a prosecutor.”
Ackerman outlined the three times Sessions lied in sworn testimony: first, when he falsely claimed at his confirmation hearing that he “didn’t recall” meeting with any Russians (he met thrice with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak); second, when he sent a letter to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) claiming outright that he never had contact with Russian officials; and third, when he “denied any knowledge about any [Trump campaign] surrogates having any contact with Russia.” The latter was proven to be a lie after it was revealed that former campaign aides George Papadopoulos and Carter Page told Sessions about their contacts with Russians.
“What you have are just outright here is three blatant lies,” Ackerman continued. “It’s hard to explain it away by mistake or lack of recollection.”
The former prosecutor went on to say that rather than genuinely forgetting, Sessions appears to be using “the old ‘I don’t recall’ trick” intentionally because he never “imagined in a million years” that former campaign aides would come forward — or that a special counsel would be appointed.
“I think he was just trying to stonewall this straight through, hoping that the whole thing would go away,” he said.
Watch the former Watergate counsel and “Sessions expert” discuss why the attorney general is using the “I don’t recall” tactic below, via MSNBC.
Joy Reid says Trump ‘pulled a full Charlottesville’ by ‘fanning the flames’ of racism and ethno-nationalism
MSNBC anchor Joy Reid blasted President Donald Trump's racism during her opening segment while hosting "The Last Word" on MSNBC on Friday.
"That didn’t last long. Having read the talking points crammed into his hands by nervous Republicans for almost an entire day, Donald Trump pulled a full Charlottesville, praising his supporters who chanted 'Send Her Back' to attack Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) at his North Carolina campaign rally as 'incredible patriots,'" Reid reported.
"Yep, 24-hours-ago, Trump -- per those nervous Republican talking points -- claimed that he disapproved of the racist chant about congresswoman Omar and even tried to stop it," she said. "He got nice headlines that claiming he was disavowing the chant from some of the news media who indulged in the false balance tick of pretending whatever the president said is true and it’s a given fact."
Maddow revolted by child sex trafficking charges against Trump pal George Nader: ‘None of this is normal’
MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow connected the dots between the President Donald Trump's administration and George Nader, who served time for child pornography prior to Trump's 2016 campaign and has subsequently been arrested on child sex trafficking charges.
"In what is an astonishingly scandal-ridden presidency, populated by an astonishingly strange cast of characters, he remains one of the most unsettling figures in all of Trump world. Again, to be clear, to disambiguate here, we are not talking about Jeffrey Epstein, seen here with the president, who is also now in custody awaiting child sex trafficking charges," Maddow explained. "No, this is a whole different guy who you can see in this picture with the president who is now in federal custody awaiting a different set of sex trafficking charges as well as serious child porn charges and not for the first time."
Trump ‘will get worse’ because he does not fear Democrats impeaching him: Chairwoman Maxine Waters
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) predicted on Friday that President Donald Trump "will get worse" because of the lack of impeachment proceedings.
Waters, who chairs the House Financial Services Committee, was interviewed on MSNBC by Chris Hayes.
"I want to switch gears on the last question here, just to talk about what’s happened over the last several days with the president’s attacks on your colleagues, the chants of 'Send her Back,' which the president sort of very, very tepidly and meekly sort of disavowed yesterday, but then essentially reavowed today when given an opportunity to talk about it, he sort of reembraced his supporters who were chanting that," Hayes noted.