Nov 14, 2017

Sessions says he didn't remember meeting Papadopoulos

Attorney General Jeff Sessions listens at the beginning of a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, Tuesday. Photo: Alex Brandon / AP

Attorney General Jeff Sessions today to Congress: "Frankly I had no recollection of this meeting until I saw these news reports. I do now recall that March 2016 meeting at the Trump Hotel" that Papadopoulos attended.

Why this matters: Sessions testimony comes after Congress learned George Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty to the FBI for lying to federal agents, told other Trump campaign officials — including Sessions — about his efforts to set up a meeting with Russian officials. Sessions chaired the March meeting during which Papadopoulos brought it up, but has previously insisted under oath that he was "not aware" of communication between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Notable moments:

  • On his previous testimony: "My answers have not changed…I have always told the truth."
  • What Sessions told Papadopoulos at the meeting: "I believe that I wanted to make clear to him that he was not authorized to represent the campaign to the Russian government...I pushed back against his suggestion…that I thought may have been improper."
  • Whether Papadopoulos' story is incorrect: "I do not challenge his recollection."
  • On Carter Page: He doesn't remember talking with the campaign foreign policy advisor about a trip he took to Russia.
  • The campaign "was a form of chaos every day from day one."
  • Sessions said he didn't talk with anyone on the campaign about the Papadopoulos meeting, although he hedged his response when asked if he spoke with anyone in Congress about it.

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 755,591 — Total deaths: 36,211 — Total recoveries: 158,527.
  2. U.S.: Leads the world in confirmed cases. Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 148,089 — Total deaths: 2,599 — Total recoveries: 4,886.
  3. Federal government latest: The White House will extend its social distancing guidelines until April 30 — Navy hospital ship arrives in Manhattan.
  4. State updates: At least 30 states have issued stay-at-home orders to residents. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said more than 9,500 people have been hospitalized.
  5. Business latest: Macy's will furlough the majority of it's workers this week, as the chain's stores remain closed.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Axios co-founder Roy Schwartz discusses his experience being diagnosed with the virus.
  7. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.

Maryland and Virginia issue coronavirus stay-at-home orders

Data: Axios reporting; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam issued stay-at-home orders on Monday, with exceptions for residents engaged in essential services, including health care and government functions.

The big picture: The states are the latest to announce policies to enforce social distancing, which have affected almost 250 million Americans. More than 1.5 billion people worldwide had been asked to stay home as of last week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 28 mins ago - Health

World coronavirus updates: Italy becomes 2nd country to exceed 100,000 cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

Spain and Italy extended lockdown deadlines on Monday, as Italy became the second country in the world to surpass 100,000 confirmed coronavirus cases.

The big picture: COVID-19 cases surged past 755,000 and the death toll topped 36,000 by Monday, per Johns Hopkins data. Italy reported more than 11,500 total deaths.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 58 mins ago - Health