Sessions versus Trump

US Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions has indicated a number of differences with policies as stated by Donald Trump when appearing at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Torture

Trump: pledged to bring back waterboarding, “and a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding”

Sessions:

“Congress has taken an action now that makes it absolutely improper and illegal to use waterboarding or any other form of torture.”

“So many people truly believe, think that the military conducted waterboarding. They never conducted any waterboarding. That was by intelligence agencies. Their rules were maintained. I used to teach the Geneva Conventions and the rules of warfare as an Army Reservist to my personnel, and the military did not do that.”

Muslim ban

Trump called for call for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.”

Sessions:

“I have no belief and do not support the idea that Muslims as a religious group should be denied admission to the United States,” Sessions said at the hearing. “We have great Muslim citizens who have contributed in so many different ways.”

Asked by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) if he would support a law barring Muslims from entering the United States, Sessions responded: “No.”

Russian election hacking

“These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction,” the Trump team has said. Trump called news of the Russian hacking “a political witch hunt.” he called on the country to “move on” from discussion of the hacking.

Sessions of the FBI conclusions: “I am sure it was honorably reached.”

He called the hacking “significant event.”

Asked if he believed the conclusion of the intelligence agencies:

“I have no reason to doubt that and have no evidence that would indicate otherwise.”

Source: Politico Where Sessions broke with Trump

Who calls the shots on things like this, the Attorney General or the President? I presume to Attorney General has to abide by the laws as determined by the politicians.

Trump now accepts Russian hacking claim

Donald Trump appears to have u-turned on the allegations of Russian hacking, but this has come from senior aide Reince Priebus rather than directly from him. But Priebus is still trying to direct blame at the victims of the hacking.

Fox: Priebus says Democrats to blame for email hack, thinks Trump accepts intel findings

Reince Priebus, Donald Trump’s incoming chief of staff, said Sunday that he thinks the president-elect “accepts the findings” of the recently released U.S. intelligence report that ties Russian President Vladimir Putin to meddling in the 2016 White House race.

“I think he accepts the finding,” Priebus said. “He’s not denying entities in Russia are behind these particular hackings.”

If that’s correct it’s a major change in stance.

Priebus’ comments marked a significant shift away from the repeated dismissals by Trump of Russian interference in the presidential election. The Republican president-elect has rebuffed claims that Russia was behind the hacks or was trying to help him win, saying the intrusions could have been carried out by China or a 400-pound hacker on his bed.

It was the first acknowledgment from a senior member of the president-elect’s team that Trump has accepted that Russia directed the hacking and subsequent disclosure of Democratic emails during the 2016 presidential election.

With less than two weeks to his inauguration, Trump has come under increasing pressure from fellow Republicans to accept intelligence community findings on Russian hacking and other attempts to influence the election.

A crucial test of Republican support for Trump comes this week with the first confirmation hearings of his Cabinet picks.

Perhaps Trump is being given reality checks from his advisers.

But Priebus also cast a lot of blame on Democrats for allowing sensitive emails to be hacked, which hurt the campaign of their presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton.

Blaming the victims. The Democrats should have had more secure communications, but that doesn’t excuse Russian interference.

Nothing from Trump on Twitter on this so far.