Questions AG Jeff Sessions is likely to (or should) face during testimony

(ABC NEWS) -- Attorney General Jeff Sessions is set to testify Tuesday before the Senate Intelligence Committee. In addition to questions about his contacts with the Russians -- about which Sessions made statements during his confirmation hearing alleged to be inaccurate -- the attorney general will be asked to respond to portions of former FBI Director James Comey's testimony from last week, explain his interactions with the former FBI director and Trump and discuss his role in Comey's firing.

The following are a list questions senators have suggested to ABC News and/or publicly that they might ask:

Why did you leave Comey alone with Trump in the Oval Office?

Comey testified that Sessions left the Oval Office on Feb. 14, leaving Comey alone with Trump. Why did he do that, and why shouldn't Trump's repeated one-on-one interactions with Comey pose a reason for concern?

Did Comey ask for help keeping distance from Trump?

Comey also testified that he implored Sessions after that meeting not to leave him alone again with the president and that Sessions "did not reply." Is that true -- if so why didn't he act? If Sessions did reply, what did he say or do?

What was your role in Comey's firing?

Sessions wrote the president on May 9, forwarding a memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to recommend removal of Comey. Was he aware the president had decided to fire Comey before seeing that memo -- and did he ask the DOJ to prepare that memo for him? And, if Comey was fired because of the burden of the Russia investigation -- as the president has now suggested -- was it appropriate for Sessions to be involved in that decision, given his recusal?

Why did you recuse yourself from the Russia investigation -- and what was Comey alluding to when he said there were facts that "would make [your] continued engagement in a Russia-related investigation problematic?"

In his testimony, Comey suggested that Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation for reasons beyond the explanation Sessions gave at the time -- that there were obvious factors, not yet public, that made Comey believe recusal was inevitable. What are those?

Is there any reason to doubt Comey's testimony and his contemporaneous notes? Are you aware of any White House tapes that exist?

Are you willing to talk to special counsel Robert Mueller?

The president says he is 100 percent willing to give testimony under oath and meet with Bob Mueller to dispute the testimony given by Comey. Will you agree to do the same? And what would it say if the president were to direct the firing of Mueller at any point in the course of this investigation?

Do you share the president's view that Comey's sharing of the details of the pair's meetings to The New York Times (via a friend) was illegal?

The president called former director Comey a “leaker” and suggested his disclosure about his meetings with the president were “totally illegal.” Do you share this view?

You served as U.S. Attorney under three presidents for more than 12 years. During that time, how many one-on-one conversations did you have with any of those presidents? Do you believe it would be appropriate for the president to contact Justice Department employees outside established protocols about investigative matters?

Fired U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara has said he found it inappropriate that Trump called him on multiple occasions.

What did happen at the Mayflower Hotel in 2016 when you were in the same room as Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak?

Sessions met with Kislyak twice in 2016 -- once at an event hosted by the Republican National Convention and once at Sessions’ Washington, D.C. office. Last week, Comey told senators that the FBI was looking into whether Sessions had a third undisclosed conversation with Kislyak at the Mayflower Hotel in April, 2016, when the two were both at a Trump campaign event. The Department of Justice denied the meeting.

Have you discovered any other contacts with Russians while you were working as a Trump campaign surrogate?

During his confirmation hearing, Sessions said he "did not have communications with the Russians" during the campaign. It was later revealed that he met with Kislyak on at least two occasions -- encounters that Sessions differentiated by portraying them as coming in the course of his duties as a senator, not within his role in the Trump campaign.

Do you believe the FBI was in disarray, that it was poorly led, and that the FBI had lost confidence in its leader, and can you provide any evidence to support that conclusion?

Director Comey said during his Senate testimony that the reasons put forth by the Trump administration for his dismissal didn’t make any sense. As he said last week, “although the law required no reason at all to fire an FBI director, the administration then chose to defame me and, more importantly, the FBI by saying that the organization was in disarray, that it was poorly led, that the workforce had lost confidence in its leader.”

Did you ever express concerns to the FBI director about how Comey was handling his job?

Comey said during his testimony that while he was aware that he “could be fired by a president for any reason, or for no reason at all,” he was “confused” by his firing because the president had repeatedly told him he was “doing a great job” as director of the FBI.

Sessions, along with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, wrote a letter to Trump on May 9 recommending he fire Comey. In Rosenstein’s letter, which Sessions endorsed in his own, Rosenstein criticized Comey’s handling of the Clinton email investigation.

Have you ever made contemporaneous notes or memos about your meetings with the president?

Former FBI Director Comey testified last week that he made records of his interactions with the president because he felt the president might one day lie about those interactions.

Did you ever raise the possibility of resigning to the president?

Last week, ABC News learned that Sessions suggested he vacate his position given his declining relationship with Trump after his recusal decision, about which Trump was given little notice.

ABC News' Riley Beggin and Adam Kelsey contributed to this report.

© 2017 ABC News


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