Sessions: No regrets about leaving Senate to serve as attorney general

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Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he has no regrets about leaving the Senate to serve as President Trump’s first attorney general, even though he’s now running as an underdog for his old Senate seat after being forced out of the administration.

Trump has endorsed Sessions’s GOP opponent, former Auburn University football coach Tommy Tuberville, ahead of the July 14 primary runoff in Alabama.

Sessions, who was the first — and for a long time only — senator to endorse Trump in 2016, left the Senate to become Trump’s attorney general in February 2017. He had held the Senate seat for 20 years.

But his relationship with the president quickly turned sour after he recused himself from a decision to appoint a special counsel to investigate any connections between the Trump campaign and Russia after it was revealed that Sessions did not disclose a meeting with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

Nevertheless, Sessions said Tuesday he doesn’t have any regrets.

“No, you don’t regret things like that,” Sessions said when asked by conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt about whether he regretted leaving the Senate to serve in the Trump administration.

“I did what I thought was right. We did so many good things as attorney general. I’m so proud of the team that we accomplished, the help we gave the president to pick judges, the defending of religious liberty, the reduction of regulations and the reversal of a surge in crime,” Sessions said on “The Hugh Hewitt Show.”

Sessions said a law enforcement plan he helped implement as attorney general “has now been reducing crime every year.”

Even so, Trump took a shot at Sessions last month when the former attorney general finished behind Tuberville in the March 4 primary.

“This is what happens to someone who loyally gets appointed attorney general of the United States & then doesn’t have the wisdom or courage to stare down & end the phone Russia Witch Hunt,” Trump tweeted the day after the election.

Sessions on Tuesday said he “absolutely” thinks he can still work well with Trump despite their “obvious arguments.”

“President Trump has been strong on China. We talked about it during the [2016] campaign. Really would love to work with him on that. And of course immigration, on trade, and other issues that a lot of the Republicans have been dragging their feet on and not being sufficiently supportive of the president,” Sessions said. “I’ll be his ally. I’ll be his advocate. I think we’ll be able to work together nicely.”

Sessions stepped down as attorney general at Trump’s request in November 2018 after being the target of the president’s frustration for months during former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of allegations that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump mocked Sessions last year for recusing himself from the decision to appoint Mueller to investigate the allegations. Then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein later appointed Mueller once Sessions stepped back from the matter.

Mimicking Sessions’s Southern twang before an audience at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference last year, Trump did an impression of his former political ally: “And the attorney general says, ‘I’m gonna recuse myself,'” as the crowd booed.

“How do you take a job and then recuse yourself? If he would have recused himself before the job, I would have said, ‘Thanks, Jeff, but I’m not going to take you,'” Trump said. “It’s extremely unfair — and that’s a mild word — to the president.”

Tags Alabama Alabama Senate race Donald Trump Jeff Sessions Mueller probe Robert Mueller Rod Rosenstein

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