WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he will recuse himself from a federal investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 White House election.
Sessions faced mounting pressure from both Democrats and Republicans to step aside after revelations that he had twice talked with Moscow's U.S. envoy during the presidential campaign. Sessions' conversations with the ambassador seem to contradict his sworn statements to Congress during his confirmation hearings.
The Justice Department said there was nothing improper about the meetings. Sessions insisted he never met with Russian officials to discuss the campaign.
Sessions said this week he would recuse himself when appropriate.
When attorneys general have recused themselves in the past, investigations were handled by lower-ranking but still senior political-appointees within the Justice Department.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is planning a news conference after revelations he had contact with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. during last year's White House campaign.
The Justice Department's Thursday afternoon news conference comes as Sessions faces mounting pressure to resign or recuse himself over his communications with the Russian envoy.
Sessions spoke twice with the ambassador during the campaign. Those conversations appear to contradict Sessions' testimony to Congress during his confirmation hearings.
Democrats are demanding that Sessions resign, while Democratic leaders and some Republicans say Sessions should step aside from a federal investigation into Russian interference in the election.
The Justice Department says there was nothing inappropriate about Sessions' contacts. Sessions says he never met with any Russian officials to discuss issues of the campaign.