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Amid Report of Further Russia Contact, Poll Shows Majority Want Sessions to Resign

Sessions likely met with Russian ambassador an undisclosed third time at a Trump campaign event, revealed the Huffington Post

Jeff Sessions

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has only acknowledged two encounters with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, but evidence has emerged that they crossed paths at least three times. (Photo: AP)

The majority of Americans want Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign and believe he lied under oath about his meetings with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, a Quinniapac poll published Wednesday found.

Fifty-two percent want Sessions to resign, the poll discovered, and 51 percent believe Sessions committed perjury during his Congressional hearing for the position of U.S. attorney general.

Also on Wednesday, the Huffington Post reported that Sessions likely met with Kislyak an undisclosed third time, at a Trump campaign event in April 2016.

After reports emerged earlier this month that Sessions had met Kislyak during the presidential campaign, contradicting his Congressional testimony, Sessions was forced to amend that testimony—acknowledging only the two encounters reported by the press.

The attorney general also recused himself from federal investigations into ties between Russia and the Trump presidential campaign, in defiance of widespread calls for his resignation.

However, the Huffington Post notes that Sessions crossed paths with Kislyak at a Trump campaign event at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. The outlet writes:


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In April of 2016, Sessions attended a VIP reception at a hotel in Washington, D.C., with President Donald Trump and roughly two dozen guests, including four ambassadors. One of them was Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. The cocktail meet-and-greet took place in a private room at the Mayflower Hotel near the White House. Shortly thereafter, Trump delivered a foreign policy speech in the hotel's ballroom, where he called for improved U.S.-Russia relations. Kislyak was seated in the front row. 

Though the event was small, it is unclear if Sessions and Kislyak spoke directly, and a spokeswoman for the attorney general did not respond immediately to questions about the event from the Huffington Post. Organizers said the event included a receiving line.

"Sessions did not mention the Mayflower event when he was asked during his confirmation hearings if he had any contact during the presidential campaign with Russian officials," the Huffington Post adds. "Nor did he put that event in his amended testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee this week."

Such revelations seem likely to fuel the ongoing campaign for Sessions' resignation. They also support calls for an independent investigation into communications between Russian officials and the Trump campaign, an investigation that the majority of Americans also support, according to the Quinnipiac poll.

"American voters support 66-30 percent an 'independent commission investigating potential links between some of Donald Trump's campaign advisors and the Russian government,'" writes Quinnipiac. "The only listed party, gender, age or racial group opposed is Republicans, opposed 64-30 percent."

The Quinnipiac poll is the third poll this week to find majority support for an independent probe into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia.

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