Sen. Cotton demands to know how a US Senator could collude with Russians in a room full of people? Calls it something from spy fiction. pic.twitter.com/KjYRRDjWJi
— PBS NewsHour (@NewsHour) June 13, 2017
Senator Tom Cotton: A very simple question that should be asked is did Donald Trump or any of his associates in the campaign collude with Russia in hacking those emails and releasing them to the public. That’s where we started six months ago. We have now heard from six of the eight Democrats on this committee, and to my knowledge, I don’t think a single one of them asked that question. They’ve gone down lots of other rabbit trails, but not that question. Maybe that is because when Jim Comey said last week, as he said to Donald Trump that three times that on three times, he assured him he was not under investigation. Maybe it’s because multiple Democrats on this committee have stated that they have seen no evidence, thus far, after six months of our investigation and ten — or eleven months — of the FBI investigation of any such collusion. I would just suggest, what do we think happened at the Mayflower? Mr. Sessions, are you familiar with what spies called “tradecraft”?
Attorney General Jeff Sessions: A little bit.
Cotton: That involves things like covert communications and dead drops and brush passes, right?
Sessions: “That is part of it.
Cotton: Do you like spy fiction? John Le Carré? Daniel Silva? Jason Matthews?
Sessions: Yeah, Allen Furst, David Ignatius. Just finished Ignatius’s book.
Cotton: Do you like Jason Bourne or James Bond movies?
Sessions: No — yes, I do.
Cotton: Have you ever, in these fantastical situations, heard of a plotline so ridiculous that a sitting United States senator and an ambassador of a foreign government colluded at an open setting with hundreds of other people to pull off the greatest caper in the history of espionage.
Sessions: Thank you for saying that, Senator Cotton. It’s just like through the looking glass. I mean, what is this? I explained how, in good faith, I said I had not met with Russians, because they were suggesting that I, as a surrogate, had been meeting continuously with Russians. I said I didn’t meet with them, and now, the next thing you know, I’m accused of some reception, plotting some sort of influence campaign for the American election. It’s just beyond my capability to understand, and I really appreciate Mr. Chairman, the opportunity to, at least, be able to say publicly I didn’t participate in that and know nothing about it.