Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed the special counsel in the Russia probe, took tough questions from Republicans and Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee.

FOX's Rachel Sutherland reports from Washington:

Asked about politically-motivated texts exchanged by FBI officials who worked on special counsel Robert Mueller's team, Rosenstein punted to the inspector general's investigation:

(Rosenstein) "I anticipate hopefully in the near future we'll have a report with the inspector general's conclusions."

Rosenstein said Mueller did the right thing when he kicked Peter Strzok, who sent some of the messages off his team:

(Rosenstein) "I think it would be very difficult, Congressman, for anybody to find somebody better qualified for the job."

Democrats say Republicans are trying to discredit Mueller's investigation.

In Washington, Rachel Sutherland, FOX News.

Follow Rachel Sutherland on Twitter: @SutherlandFOX