Ron Wyden (D-OR) asked the committee to compel Attorney General Jeff Sessions to answer questions in public in the coming weeks.
Sessions clarified his plans for the coming week Saturday by announcing that he would not be able to keep a scheduled appearance before a different Senate committee to review spending plans for his department and associated agencies.
Former FBI Director James Comey hinted in his public hearing Thursday that Sessions, a former USA senator from Alabama, may have had additional contacts with Russians, and said in a closed hearing that investigators had received Russian intercepts detailing a possible third meeting between Sessions and Kislyak, sources familiar with the briefing told CNN on Thursday.
Sessions had been due to appear before the Senate Appropriations Committee tomorrow about the Justice Department's budget for 2018, but said the switch of hearing was necessary as it had become clear he would be questioned about Russian Federation.
The Justice Department, which Sessions heads, has been investigating contacts between the Russian government and President Donald Trump's campaign organization before last November's general election, when Trump was a candidate and had not yet been chosen by American voters to be president.
Back in March, Sessions stepped aside from overseeing a federal investigation into contacts between Russia and the Trump campaign after he acknowledged meeting twice a year ago with the Russian diplomat, Sergey Kislyak.
Sessions has been dogged by questions about possible additional encounters with the ambassador.
With reports circulating that Trump had been clashing with his attorney general, and that Sessions had offered to resign, the White House on Tuesday declined to say whether the president maintained confidence in Sessions.
With Sessions already under fire for failing to disclose the two meetings with Russians, CNN reported last week that investigators were looking into a possible third Sessions meeting with Kislyak, on the sidelines of an April 27, 2016 campaign event in Washington. Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee Thursday that he couldn't discuss the "problematic" reason why the FBI believed Sessions would have to recuse himself from the investigation.
A Democratic senator says he expects tough questions for Attorney General Jeff Sessions about his involvement in the firing of FBI Director James Comey when he testifies to Congress on Tuesday. The fact that Sessions would delegate that task to his deputy showed the Russian Federation investigation was distracting him from his core duties.
Mr Comey testified in public and then met with the committee in a closed session to discuss matters touching on classified information.
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