Russian Ambassador Kislyak Welcomed Multiple Times to Obama White House

Sergey Kislyak / AP
March 3, 2017

Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak appeared on Obama White House visitor logs at leastĀ 22 times between 2009 and 2016.

The Daily Caller reported that the Kislyak appeared on the visitor logs as recently as September 2016. Kislyak had a meeting with John Holdren, one of Obama's senior advisers, as well as Marina W. Gross, Alexander Ermolaev, Alexey Lopatin, Vyacheslav Balakirev, and Sergey Sarazhinskiy.

Kislyak met with National Security Council senior official Gary Samore on weapons of mass destruction four times during Obama's first term. The ambassador also meet three times with Obama's senior adviser Robert Malley on defeating the Islamic State (IS). Kislyak also paid the visitor's office four visits.

Kislyak is listed an additional 12 times among other visitors for events like "holiday open houses" or "diplomatic corps reception."

The logs were released by the Obama White House as a push for transparency in his administration.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has recently come under scrutiny and calls for his resignation from Democratic senators for his interactions with Kislyak. Sessions is accused of making misleading statements during his confirmation hearing about meeting with the ambassador during the election.

During a press conference Thursday, Sessions said that he would recuse himself from anĀ investigation into Russia interfering with the 2016 presidential election.

"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 said.

But the Trump administration is not the first to have an unconventional take on Russia.

Former President Barack Obama was once caught on a hot mic leaning over to then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev at a national security summit in South Korea saying that he would have "more flexibility" after his final reelection.

And in a 2012 presidential debate with Mitt Romney, Obama told him that Russia was not that big of a threat and said that "1980s were asking for their foreign policy back." Obama scolded Romney by saying that the Cold War had been over 30 years.