HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - America's Top Cop is under fire Thursday, after revelations that he met twice with a Russian Ambassador, and failed to disclose that in his senate confirmation hearing.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions of Alabama has announced he will recuse himself from any investigation into the Trump Campaign and their interactions with the Russian government. Here's a portion of the question and answer portion between Senator Franken and then-Senator Sessions.
Sen. Al Franken asks, "It all starts with the question that Sessions was asked during his confirmation hearing by Senator Al Franken of Minnesota. Here's the text of the question and answer, from Sessions' January 10th hearing. These documents also allegedly stated quote, there was a continuing exchange of information during the campaign between Trump surrogates and intermediaries for the Russian government. If there is any evidence that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign communicated with the Russian government in the course of the campaign ,what will you do?"
Sessions responds, "Sen. Franken, I’m not aware of any of those activities. I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians and I’m unable to comment on it."
Local attorney Mark McDaniel told WHNT News 19, how that question was asked, has everything to do with the answer, then Senator Sessions gave.
“I do believe as you look at the questions that was asked and his answers, I don’t believe, he certainly didn’t commit perjury," said McDaniel.
McDaniel says you can't forget how Sessions got to the national stage. He spent most of his career in a courtroom.
“Lawyers, we’re trained, we listen to the questions and we listen to every word of the question and for people to say he was lying or didn’t answer the question right or whatever, he listened to the question and he answered the question," he explained.
As an attorney, McDaniel believes Sessions answered the questions as a surrogate of the campaign, and not through the lens of a senator. Therefore, his two meetings with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, didn't apply to the question Franken asked.
“Had he been asked, have you ever had a conversation with a Russian ambassador and name that person? That’s different, but that’s not how the question was asked," said McDaniel.
Beyond being a fellow attorney, McDaniel said he knows the man, very well.
“There’s no way in the world the man I know would stand up in front of a confirmation hearing and lie. That’s not Jeff Sessions," he said.
Many Democrats have called for Session's resignation, but based off what we know now, McDaniel believes the former Alabama Senator didn't do anything illegal.
"I don’t think he had to recuse himself, but I think it was the better thing to do considering the atmosphere in Washington," said McDaniel.
We also asked about whether or not Sessions should have appointed a special prosecutor to replace him, if an investigation should be initiated into the Trump Campaign.
McDaniel believes, based on what we know right now, this isn't a Watergate type of situation where you have a known criminal act, that needs the attention of a special prosecutor.
Donald Trump had the following response to today's recusal announcement: