A Little Bit of Pushback on the Jeff Sessions Story

Cheriss May/NurPhoto via ZUMA

Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have both said they were unaware of any connections between the Trump campaign and Russian officials. However, the New York Times is running with a story today saying that recently unsealed court documents “cast doubt” on this. They’re talking about the charging document against George Papadopoulos, and this is the relevant paragraph:

I considered writing about this yesterday, but backed off. Both Trump and Sessions were at this “national security meeting,” but all this document says is that Papadopoulos claimed he had contacts in Russia and could set up a meeting. Other sources say that Trump asked a few questions and Sessions urgently advised against any talks with Russians. Given this, I figured that both men could truthfully say they were unaware of any contacts. They were aware that a staffer said he knew people and could set something up, but he was shut down and nothing ever happened.

At least, that’s all we know based on this document—though it’s certainly possible that something more happened later on. This is obviously something that’s worth following up, but for now it should be treated with a bit of caution.


We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.