In rare move, Sessions pushes back on Trump attack

The attorney general was responding to a Trump tweet.

“As long as I am the Attorney General, I will continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honor, and this Department will continue to do its work in a fair and impartial manner according to the law and Constitution,” Sessions said in a statement issued Wednesday afternoon.

At an afternoon event at the White House that took place after Sessions issued his statement, Trump ignored a question about whether he still had confidence in his attorney general.

On Capitol Hill, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham came to his defense.

"I have a lot of faith in Jeff Sessions. What you see with Jeff is what you get. He’s a very decent, honorable man. And I think the president said some things quite frankly that are inappropriate," Graham said. "And I would encourage Jeff Sessions to stay in his job and to do it in the way he believes it to be- to do what’s right. I think he’s doing a good job."

Earlier this month, the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee released a memo - drafted by Republican staffers – accusing the FBI and Justice Department of “abuses” by relying on a controversial and unverified “dossier” about Trump to seek surveillance of Page.

Last week, Democrats issued their own memo, insisting the surveillance of Page was appropriate and based on multiple streams of intelligence.

Nevertheless, Republicans have been calling on Sessions to investigate the matter.

On Tuesday, Sessions confirmed that he had referred the issue to the Justice Department’s inspector general.

ABC News' Trish Turner contributed to this report.