Jeff Sessions causes more problems for the Trump administration

By Henry Kelly and Elliot Wall

Jeff Sessions
image via media.al.com

There is more trouble for the Trump administration as yet another member of his cabinet, this time his Attorney General Jeff Sessions, is caught up in the controversy that swirls around the new administration. This new controversy comes soon after General Michael Flynn resigned from the cabinet over allegations of contacting Russia, and the accusations currently being thrown at Sessions are arguably worse.

Specifically, the controversy revolves around Sessions’ meeting with with the Russian ambassador, that occurred while he was campaigning for Trump. The controversy arises from the Logan Act, a 18th century law that prevents unauthorized U.S. citizens from contacting foreign governments on their government’s behalf. In addition, some have linked it to claims that Russia tried to influence the U.S. elections, with some going as far to say Sessions had a hand in this alleged rigging.

Sessions’ defense against these claims is that these meetings were simply part of his duties as a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader in the House, and former member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, claims that Session didn’t have a reason to meet with the Russian ambassador, as neither did she when she served on the equivalent committee in the House. Her claims are somewhat deflated by the fact that she did indeed meet with the Russian ambassador during her tenure as Speaker of the House.

The controversy deepened however, after Sessions was accused of lying under oath about his Russian contacts (during his Senate confirmation hearing for Attorney General, he had stated that he had never had contact with Russia). Despite contesting that he hadn’t lied, due to the way the question was worded, Sessions eventually recused himself from all investigations regarding the relations between Russia and the Trump administration, agreeing that an unbiased observer was needed.

Combined with Michael Flynn’s resignation, this only furthered the widespread distrust in the Trump administration. While it’s difficult to say how the administration’s popularity was effected, Trump’s favorability rating didn’t drop significantly. Some suggest this is because only extremely dedicated Trump supporters are still supporting him. Others claim that this is because it really didn’t have an effect – it simply didn’t resonate enough. Either way, scandals particularly about Russian contact, will probably plague the Trump administration for the foreseeable future.

The 89th Oscar’s

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, is a group of twenty-four artistic honors given each year by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), to award excellence in cinematic achievements chosen by votes (as stated on oscars.org). The awards started in 1930, during which it was broadcasted on the radio until 1953 when it first was shown on TV. The Oscars are shown in over 200 countries, and it has served as a model for many other television awards such as: the Emmy Awards for television, the Tony Awards for theater, and the Grammy Awards for music and recording.

This year is the Oscars 89th awards ceremony, and every year they give out awards to Best Picture, Actor/Actress, Supporting Actor/Actress, Animated Feature, Cinematography, Costume Design, Direction, Documentary Feature, Documentary Short, Film Editing, Foreign Language Film, Makeup and Hairstyling, and total score. This year, winners of the Oscars included many movies such as La La Land, Moonlight, Suicide Squad, and Zootopia.  

There was one thing a little different this year about the Oscars. If you were watching when this event occurred, you might have had a little déjà vu or shock. An award was announced for the wrong person, similar to what happened to Steve Harvey, back in 2015, when he announced the wrong winner for Miss America. Harvey announced Miss Colombia as the winner, when in actuality it was Miss Philippines. He took this opportunity to get a little redemption for all the hate he got that followed his mistake.

What exactly happened at the Oscars? No one is truly sure what happened, but all we know is that the announcers, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, didn’t catch a mistake that was written on the envelope twice, saying “Award for best leading actress” before reading the winner’s name. They announced the name for the wrong Best Picture winner.

Many celebs said that it was a hard way to  find out that you lost, and to find out that you won. No one could fully celebrate as much as they wanted to. People were very happy for the Moonlight cast, but felt sad for the La La Land cast as they were first called up to accept the award they didn’t win.

Even though Faye Dunaway announced the wrong winners, Warren Beatty, her co-host, gave her the wrong envelope. Many people call this a half-Steve Harvey, then a full-Steve Harvey, because they were given the wrong envelope, and did not just read it wrong.

The show later went on to Jimmy Kimmel, who foreshadowed his next stunt at the Grammy’s. Kimmel brought in a bus full of tourists, and walked them through the entire awards ceremony. The tourists, dressed in sweatshirts and other casual clothes, were as surprised as the rest of us. He warned the crowd before the tourists entered, and joked with each one as they passed him. Every tourist got to shake famous peoples’ hands, and one even asked Denzel Washington marry them.

As many would say, this year’s Oscars were filled with many ups and downs, and many laughs. The final winners for each category were:

Best Picture: Moonlight

Actor: Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea 

Actress: Emma Stone, La La Land

Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali, Moonlight  

Supporting Actress: Viola Davis, Fences

Animated Feature: Zootopia 

Cinematography: La La Land

Costume Design: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Direction: Damien Chazelle, La la Land

Documentary Feature: O.J: Made in America  

Documentary Short: The White Helmets

Film Editing: Hacksaw Ridge

Foreign Language Film: The Salesman 

Makeup and Hairstyling: Suicide Squad

Score: La la Land