Democrats Demand Jeff Sessions Explain What He’s Doing to Stop Russian Interference

In a letter, House members warn the attorney general that “inaction here would be unacceptable.”

Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks at a news conference at the U.S. Justice Department in Washington D.C., United States, on Nov. 29, 2017.Ting Shen/Xinhua via ZUMA Wire

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are giving Attorney General Jeff Sessions another chance to explain what the Justice Department is doing to protect against Russian interference in elections.

In a Friday letter, 16 Democrats on the panel asked Sessions to brief them by December 14 on vulnerabilities in federal election systems and steps to reduce them, including potential updates to laws, in the wake of the intelligence agencies’ conclusion that Russia attempted to undermine the 2016 election and help elect President Donald Trump.

The committee members cited a November 15 hearing during which Sessions admitted his department had not done enough to prepare for anticipated Russian meddling in the 2018 midterm elections. In response to a question from Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Mich.), Sessions said he had not acted on a pledge he made at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in October to conduct a review of the issue. “I have not followed through to see where we are on that,” Sessions told Schneider. “I will personally take action to do so.”

“Inaction here would be unacceptable,” the Democrats write. “You have a responsibility to do everything in your power to ensure that our elections are free, fair and void of foreign influence.”
 


DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

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

Subscribe

Support our journalism

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

Donate