Sessions said he directed USA attorney John Huber of Utah to lead the investigation into Republicans' allegations that the FBI and Department of Justice abused a surveillance program against a former Trump campaign aide and determine whether a second counsel may be required in the future.
Though he will not name a special counsel, Sessions said in the four-page letter to three Republican lawmakers - Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Representative Bob Goodlatte of Virginia and Representative Trey Gowdy of SC - that he has already asked federal prosecutor John Huber to be the lead investigator into abuse of power claims within the law enforcement agencies.
But Mr Sessions, in a letter to three congressional Republicans, said the allegations did not warrant the appointment of a special counsel, noting that the matter was already being investigated. The letter is addressed to Senate Judiciary Committee Chuck Grassley, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, and House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy.
Horowitz's investigation comes at the request of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and congressional Republicans.
Sessions' letter is embedded below. Senator Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, said of Huber's appointment: "Attorney General Sessions has picked the right man for the job".
President Trump previously had been critical of Sessions for relying merely on the inspector general to look into his party's concerns, particularly with respect to Page.
"We need to have this special counsel".
Despite AG Sessions repeated assurances that he had already assigned a DOJ prosecutor to work with IG Michael Horowitz, on the myriad of issues surrounding corruption within the Federal Bureau of Investigation and DOJ - to include the FISA court abuses, congressional voices kept demanding a second special counsel.
Sessions isn't specifying the issues, but Republicans have called for special counsels to investigate Clinton Foundation dealings and an Obama-era uranium deal.
Huber, who has served in both Democratic and Republican administrations as a career prosecutor, almost had his tenure as U.S. attorney cut short previous year. Republicans are also likely to be upset with what amounts to the Justice Department investigating itself.
In the meantime we intend to continue our investigation into the decisions made and not made by DOJ in 2016 and 2017.