by Rich Lowry

Notwithstanding Andy’s point on the merits below, Democrats created enough fodder on executive privilege to drive some negative news coverage over the next 12–18 hours, but otherwise the hearing has been a nothingburger. Sessions pretty effectively summoned righteous indignation at the cracked notion that he had some role in subverting the American electoral process. Even if you consider it plausible that Russian colluded with the Trump campaign, a sitting U.S. senator like Jeff Sessions would not have been the natural point of contact, nor would Ambassador Kislyak have been the one to make the approach, let alone in fairly public settings. I thought Sessions handled the recusal questions well, explaining that he recused himself from the Russia investigation, not overall responsibility for the FBI. It’s when it comes to the reasons for Comey’s dismissal that things get hazier. Sessions can’t come out and say it but his testimony and the evidence pretty strongly suggests that Sessions and Rosenstein wanted to get rid of Comey for one reason (he violated normal procedures in the Clinton investigation) and Trump terminated him for another (Comey wouldn’t publicly say that he wasn’t under investigation).

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