Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Rep. Jim Jordan, Ohio Republican, engaged in a fierce exchange Thursday over whether the Department of Justice is hiding documents related to the Russia probe.
The roughly five-minute exchange was marked by the two men frequently interrupting each other and Mr. Rosenstein accusing the conservative lawmaker — one of his harshest critics — of attacking him personally.
“Your use of this to attack me personally is deeply wrong,” Mr. Rosenstein said.
Mr. Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher A. Wray testified Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee to answer lawmakers questions about the pace of document production. Republicans say they are being denied sensitive information about special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into possible Russia collusion with the Trump campaign. The Justice Department insists that it has turned over everything it can and the additional documents requested would put classified investigations at risk.
At times, Mr. Jordan raised his voice at the deputy attorney general.
“I don’t know why you won’t give us what we’ve asked for,” he shouted.
Mr. Rosenstein fired back, calling the conservative lawmaker’s characterization “inaccurate.”
“It is accurate,” said Mr. Jordan, raising his voice even further. “We have caught you hiding information —”
To which Mr. Rosenstein responded, “Your use of this to attack me personally is deeply wrong.”
Mr. Jordan insisted that he is not the only lawmaker who shared that view. He pointed a resolution that was passed by the House shortly after Mr. Rosenstein’s testimony that gives the Justice Department until July 6 to comply with the document request.
“I think in a few minutes the House of Representatives is going to go on record saying you have not complied with requests from a separate and equal branch of government, that you haven’t complied with subpoenas, and you got seven days to get your act together,” Mr. Jordan said.
Mr. Rosenstein snapped back, “We have a team of folks that are doing their best. We have people working around the clock. Whether you vote or not is not going to effect document production.”