GOP leaders skeptical about US attorneys’ freedom in leaks probe

Attorney General Eric Holder’s announcement that two U.S. attorneys have been assigned to lead a criminal investigation into possible, unauthorized leaks of classified information is being met with skepticism by GOP lawmakers questioning whether the attorneys will be able to act independently of the Obama administration.

“I have no doubt that these U.S. attorneys are excellent prosecutors,” GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss, vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said. “However, they would still be operating under the Obama administration’s Department of Justice. The better solution is to appoint an outside counsel to impartially investigate what will likely lead to a White House inquiry.”

Holder said late Friday he had assigned the investigation to Ronald C. Machen Jr., a U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, and Rod J. Rosenstein, a U.S. attorney for Maryland.

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