- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions should be forced to reveal how he would grapple with reports that Russia believes it has compromising information on President-elect Donald Trump, a top Senate Democrat said Wednesday, opening a new line of attack on the future Cabinet.

Democrats made little headway in attacking Mr. Sessions, a fellow senator, in his confirmation hearing Tuesday.

But Sen. Richard J. Durbin, the second-ranking Democrat in the chamber and a member of the committee that grilled Mr. Sessions, said the situation changed after a CNN report that U.S. intelligence officials believe Russian officials think they have damaging material on Mr. Trump.

“The context of Senator Sessions’ confirmation hearings is changing by the minute,” Mr. Durbin said in a statement. It is becoming clear that we need credible assurance that America’s next attorney general would continue any investigation on this matter, independent of directives by the White House to terminate it.”

Even before CNN’s report, senators on the committee had prodded Mr. Sessions on how he would handle an investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. election. Mr. Sessions said he would follow where the information took him.

“If the laws violated and they can be prosecuted then of course you’ll have to handle that in an appropriate way,” he said.

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