WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Jeff Sessions talked twice with Russia's ambassador to the United States during the presidential campaign season, communications that spurred calls in Congress for him to recuse himself from a Justice Department investigation into Russian interference in the U.S. election.
The Justice Department said Wednesday night that the two conversations took place last year when Sessions was a senator. One was an office visit that occurred in his capacity as a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. The department says the other occurred in a group setting with other ambassadors following a Heritage Foundation speech.
Sessions, an early supporter of President Donald Trump and a policy adviser to the Republican candidate, did not disclose those discussions at his confirmation hearing in January when asked what he would do if "anyone affiliated" with the campaign had been in contact with officials of the Russian government.
Sessions replied that he had not had communication with the Russians.
Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said Wednesday night that "there was absolutely nothing misleading about his answer."