After missing a court-ordered deadline by one day, the Justice Department released a heavily redacted security form related to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his possible contacts with the Russian government.
American Oversight, an ethics watchdog group, filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request in March for sections of a form that related to Sessions’ contact “with any official of the Russian government.” A judge ordered that the Justice Department hand over the documents by July 12, NPR reports.
“The court gave DOJ thirty days to produce Attorney General Sessions’s security clearance form, DOJ has already confirmed its contents to the press and Sessions has testified about it to Congress, so there is no good reason to withhold this document from the public,” Austin Evers, the executive director of American Oversight, said in a statement to NPR.
The form is a detailed report that is required to obtain security clearance for certain government positions.
Sessions did not disclose two meetings he had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in 2016 during his Senate confirmation hearing. During testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee last month, Sessions called any suggestion that he colluded with Russia on behalf of President Donald Trump’s campaign an “appalling and detestable lie.”
On Thursday, American Oversight explained that the DOJ released a “single, heavily-redacted page” of Sessions’ form.
The only question not redacted was Sessions’ answer of “no” for the question, “have you or any member of your immediate family in the past seven years had any contact with a foreign government, its establishment or its representatives, whether inside or outside the United States?”
You can see the full redacted form here.