Attorney General Jeff Sessions got himself into hot water this week when The Washington Post reported that he had met with the Russian ambassador during the course of the Trump campaign — despite the fact that in his confirmation hearings he said he hadn't been in contact with anyone from the Russian government. Not the smartest move, to say the least. Well, leave it to John Oliver to take on these Russian connections and summarize them in the perfect nutshell, "Stupid Watergate." Politics right now are basically this writ large.
Oliver started the show with a rundown of Sessions' slip. He played video of sessions responding to Sen. Al Franken's question regarding Russia and the Trump campaigns' connections. "I’m not aware of any of those activities," Sessions said at the time. "I have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and I did not have communications with the Russians." From there Oliver explored the other Trump campaign staff who had been tied to the country and then summarized it all neatly:
And Trump isn't the only one who seems a little clueless. As Oliver pointed out, Sessions got himself into this mess. He wasn't even asked about meetings with the Russians, he brought it up. "That was an unforced error!" Oliver says, exasperated. "He just implicated himself out of the blue, which should have been immediately suspicious. If you ask someone how their weekend was, and they say, ‘Well, I definitely wasn’t masturbating into the Slurpee machine at the 7-Eleven,’ you check the f*cking security cameras at the 7-Eleven and you don’t act surprised.”
This isn't the first time that a member of the Trump campaign has allegedly lied about Russia. Of course former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn had to submit his resignation after what he talked about in meetings with the Russian ambassador surfaced.
It would be great if Sessions were more the exception rather than the rule. But in addition to Flynn, Trump's former campaign manager stepped down after his alleged connections to Russian interests in Ukraine came to light. Paul Manafort still denies the story.
You would hope that if this were a scandal — and it very well isn't — that those involved would be a little better at keeping things quiet.
Image: Last Week Tonight/HBO.