Political class has raised lying to a national art form.
FIRST TIME AROUND, Attorney General Jeff Sessions told a congressional committee considering his appointment he had no contacts with any Russians while he was working with the Trump campaign. He later was forced to clarify that statement and acknowledge Russian contacts after further information surfaced about his dealings with the Russian ambassador to the United States.
In another appearance before a congressional committee investigating Russian matters and the 2016 election, Sessions was asked if he had any knowledge of Russian contacts with anyone connected to the Trump campaign. "I did not, and I'm not aware of anyone else that did," Sessions said. "I don't believe that happened."
Then, as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, it was revealed two individuals connected to the campaign - George Papadopoulos and Carter Page - not only were in contact with Russian operators over campaign matters but both made Sessions aware of it in 2016.
THE RESPONSE FROM Sessions, at yet another congressional hearing Tuesday, was classic politician double-talk: "I've always told the truth," Sessions said. "I will not accept - and reject - accusations that I have ever lied" while testifying under oath to the committees.
So, apparently, we're supposed to chalk it all up to Sessions' frequent all-purpose explainer: "I do not recall."
Or, maybe we should believe it's just the deny-and-deflect strategy typical of politicians as they dodge the question being asked.
In fairness to Sessions, he is not the first nor is he likely to be the last member of the political class to look America squarely in the eye and passionately deny the obvious. Anyone of a certain age remembers President Clinton's finger-wagging, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman."
Truth is to politicians what elastic is to waistbands.
OF COURSE THE attorney general has been lying. Ask yourself: Would his performance pass the mom test? If a kid has to change and modify the answer to a mom question, over and over and then over again, is mom likely to give Junior a stern talking-to about stretching the truth?
And shouldn't the American people hold political leaders equally accountable?
Really. How stupid do they think the people are?
Hint: You are not going to like the answer.