Top Democratic lawmakers including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senator Chuck Schumer and Senator Elizabeth Warren are asking Attorney General Jeff Sessions to resign following a failure to disclose meetings with Russian officials during the presidential campaign. In New Jersey, many lawmakers are following suit while others are calling for Sessions to recuse himself from federal investigations regarding Russia’s alleged possible involvement in the 2016 presidential race
On Thursday, Rep. Bill Pascrell of New Jersey’s 9th congressional district released a statement calling for Sessions to step down from his post.
“Under penalty of perjury, Attorney General Jeff Sessions told the Senate Judiciary Committee, ‘I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians.’ Now, we now know that statement is not true,” said Pascrell in a statement. “Regardless of what hat he was wearing, Attorney General Sessions lied under oath to Congress about his communications with the Russians. With the numerous questions these meetings and reasons for his misleading remaining, Attorney General Sessions must step down.”
The following members of New Jersey’s congressional delegation have also called for Sessions to step down: Rep. Frank Pallone (D-6), Rep. Albo Sires (D-8), Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-9) and Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-12).
While Republicans are not asking Sessions to leave his position, a number of top GOP officials have asked the new attorney general to recuse himself from federal investigations regarding the Russia investigation. Among New Jersey Republicans, Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2) and Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7) have both asked for a recusal from Sessions and for the attorney general to clarify his testimony.
In New Jersey, Senator Bob Menendez also joined the chorus of those asking Sessions to recuse himself. The senator has not asked for Sessions’ resignation. He posted the following on Twitter Thursday morning:
When Sessions was nominated, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker testified against him in an unusual move for two concurrently serving senators. On Wednesday night, Booker tweeted that he will continue to push for an independent investigation.
UPDATE – Following the publication of this article, Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11) issued the following statement on Sessions: “Revelations about the testimony of Attorney General Sessions before the Senate Judiciary Committee have raised a number of serious questions. He should immediately clarify his words and his actions and, at the very least, remove himself from any investigations into contacts between the Trump campaign and Putin’s partners and allies in Russia.”