House Dem: 'Nothing Wrong' With Trump Campaign Contacting Russian Officials

March 3, 2017

Rep. Adam Smith (D., Wash.) told CNN host Wolf Blitzer on Friday that there was nothing wrong with then-candidate President Donald Trump's campaign staff communicating with Russian officials last year.

"You say recusal is not enough. You've said, and I am quoting you now, say 'he is unfit to serve as the head of the Justice Department.' You want him out. Tell us why," Blitzer said.

"What's interesting about this is, as many people have said, look there is really nothing wrong on its face with members of the Trump campaign, be it Jeff Sessions or Michael Flynn, having conversations with Russian officials," Smith responded.

Smith added that it was a "little odd" to do during the course of the campaign, but he didn't think that it was disqualifying. He said the Trump administration was being secretive, however, by meeting behind the scenes with Russian officials.

"Michael Flynn was fired for doing the exact same thing that Jeff Sessions just did and if there was nothing there, why was Michael Flynn fired?" Smith asked.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke to Russia's Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak twice during Trump's 2016 campaign, the Washington Post reported on Wednesday, causing backlash among Democratic members of Congress.

Some Democrats have called for Sessions to recuse himself as attorney general from the pending investigation into Russia's involvement during the 2016 campaign, but several Democratic members of Congress have called for him to resign, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.).

Sessions held a press conference on Thursday where he recused himself from any further investigations into the 2016 campaign.

"I have decided to recuse myself from any existing or future investigations of any matters related in any way to the campaigns for President of the United States," Sessions told reporters.