Sessions used campaign funds for travel that included Russian meeting: reports

Sessions used campaign funds for travel that included Russian meeting: reports
© Getty Images

Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsSessions defends Trump’s power to pardon without consulting Justice Dept GOP senator: 'We were there' on immigration before talks got derailed Sessions defends census citizenship question as 'common sense' MORE used funds from his Senate reelection campaign account to cover travel expenses at last year’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland, according to multiple reports, where he met with the Russian ambassador.

Sessions, who was then a Republican senator from Alabama and frequent surrogate for President Trump on the campaign trail, has defended his meeting with Sergey Kislyak as perfectly normal for a member of the Armed Services Committee. But The Wall Street Journal said Thursday he used campaign funds for the travel, rather than official Senate Armed Services Committee funds.

The Journal said Sessions’s campaign account made two payments of $1,395 to the Sheraton Cleveland Airport on July 16, two days before the Republican convention.

None of the payments reimbursing Sessions appear in Trump's 2016 presidential campaign account.

ABC News also confirmed the spending ahead of the meeting, news of which put Sessions on the hot seat this week, with top congressional Democrats calling for his resignation.

Reports emerged Wednesday that Sessions spoke with Kislyak twice during the 2016 race, once in July at the GOP convention and another time via phone in September.

Sessions did not disclose their discussions during his confirmation hearings for attorney general in February, testifying under oath that “he did not have communications with the Russians.”

The attorney general on Thursday recused himself from investigations into Russia’s interference into the presidential election, bowing to mounting bipartisan pressure over his contact with Kislyak.