Both Republican and Democratic House members were left wanting more after their briefing with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Friday, complaining that there was no new information and that the meeting was a waste of time.
The largely classified briefing came a day after the Senate held a similar meeting with Rosenstein, which was requested at the behest of Democratic leaders in each chamber. Yet lawmakers said answers were few and far between.
"There was very little," said Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, "other than he made a decision based upon restoring public confidence to appoint an outside special counsel. I think a lot of us were very surprised by it, but I think it was the right decision."
House Democrats were more forceful in their characterization of the meeting. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., described it a "non-event" and "unsettling" after sitting in on the hour-long meeting.
"No real information. I'd be more satisfied if we could learn something," Crist said. "It was kind of weird ... No answers."
One House Democrat was even overheard saying that he learned more from reports about the Senate's briefing on Thursday than on Friday.
The briefing came two days after Rosenstein appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to serve as special counsel of the Russia investigation. Since the announcement, President Trump has labeled the probe the "single greatest witch hunt" in U.S. political history.
Despite praise from many Democrats over Mueller's selection, there are still more questions outstanding. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is leading the call for a bipartisan commission modeled on the 9/11 commission, to investigate.
"There are a lot of unanswered questions at this point," said. Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., who serves on the House Oversight Committee. "I think that the bottom line is he was asked a ton of questions, and I think he probably did what he had to do in declining a lot of questions, but I think probably a lot of people like myself walked away thinking, 'well, we need to wait for some answers.'"
The meeting also took place hours before Trump is set to depart for a nine-day foreign trip — his first as president — and as he continues his search for a new FBI director. Former Sen. Joe Lieberman, a longtime Democrat who finished out his Senate career as an independent, is the front-runner for the post, which has been met by opposition in some Democratic circles.
However, Republicans are behind the 2000 Democratic vice presidential nominee. Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas, remarked Friday that he believes Lieberman is the only person who could attain unanimous support in the Senate. Strong bipartisan support is viewed as a crucial need for whoever takes over as FBI chief.