Jun 12, 2017

What really happened with Sessions

Andrew Harnik / AP

It didn't have the buildup of #ComeyWeek, but #SessionsDay could have its own fireworks. When Attorney General Jeff Sessions said this morning that he wanted tomorrow's Russia-related testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee (2:30 p.m.) to be public, many Republicans around town were surprised and worried.

"The risk of damage is very high," said one Republican lobbyist. "All possible outcomes are bad. Some worse than others."

  • Behind the curtain: I'm told by Senate Democratic sources that Sessions initially offered a private session, but that was a non-starter with the committee. So the meeting is being held in public at the insistence of the committee.
  • The two-step: The committee let Sessions announce that he was requesting a public hearing, then swiftly issued its own announcement about the open session.
  • If you're Sessions ... You're very conscious that President Trump will watch the hearings, either live or on his TiVo.
  • 1 big thing to watch for, via Matt Miller, a Justice Department official under President Obama: "Will Sessions answer questions about his involvement in Comey's firing, or will he cite executive privilege and an ongoing investigation?"
  • Spicer today: "I think it depends on the scope of the questions, and it would be -- to get into a hypothetical at this point would be premature."

In tomorrow's PM, we'll have the Axios read-between-the-lines of the afternoon testimony. In the meantime ...

Go deeper

Trump administration backs Oracle in Google fight

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo via The Washington Post.

The Trump administration is siding with Oracle in the database giant's dispute with Google before the Supreme Court — a move that comes as Oracle's founder hosts a high-dollar fundraiser for the president.

Why it matters: Billions of dollars — and, Google argues, the future of software innovation — are at stake as a long-running copyright dispute between the two giant companies heads to the Supreme Court next month.

Established VCs turn to "super angels" to grow their network

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Thanks to companies like AngelList and Carta that make it easier than ever to set up small VC funds, a new generation of so-called “super angels” is cropping up — and established venture funds are backing them.

Why it matters: Just like the boom in scout programs a number of years ago, it’s all about the deal flow.

Scoop: Top NSC official reassigned to Energy Department amid "Anonymous" fallout

Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates will be reassigned as a senior adviser to Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette, the National Security Council said Thursday — and a senior White House official said that the administration "rejects" the rumors that she is "Anonymous."

Why it matters: Coates has battled claims that she is the still-unknown Trump administration official that penned a New York Times op-ed and book critical of President Trump.