Washington( CNN) President Donald Trump's recurred public comments assaulting the Justice Department have not influenced the department or ongoing investigations, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Tuesday during a contentious House judiciary committee hearing.

During his five hours of witnes before 40 lawmakers on Tuesday, Sessions repeatedly defended himself and his department as honest and free of political influence, as Democrats and Republicans hammered him with questions on the ongoing Russia investigation and matters related to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, respectively.

Sessions said although his Justice Department will consider investigations into Clinton, he could not say whether he would recuse himself, muddying his previous statements on the matter. He said there was not yet enough evidence of impropriety to merit designating a new special counsel.