Attorney general says Hillary Clinton email probe may not be settled anytime soon

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Attorney General, Loretta Lynch says Clinton email probe may continue for some time to com

Attorney General Loretta Lynch has some disappointing news for Hillary Clinton foes and fans who hope her email drama will be resolved before the Democratic National Convention: The investigation has no deadline.

Lynch says setting a hard stop date for "a full, thorough and independent review" would hamper authorities' ability to do a good job.

Read more: Hillary Clinton Email: A Quick Guide to the Personal Email Scandal

"People have to have confidence that we treat every case the same, no matter whose last name is involved, no matter how much publicity it gets," Lynch said in an interview with Al Hunt on Charlie Rose, per Bloomberg News.

"We don't make predictions on the time because that essentially cuts off the independence of that and it cuts off the thoroughness."

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Hillary Clinton rallies in Ohio
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Attorney general says Hillary Clinton email probe may not be settled anytime soon
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Former President Bill Clinton greets attendees as he campaigns for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, at the Ohio Education Association, Wednesday, March 9, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Former President Bill Clinton, center left, has pictures taken with attendees as he campaigns for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, Wednesday, March 9, 2016, at the Ohio Education Association in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Former Columbus, Ohio Mayor Michael B. Coleman listens as former President Bill Clinton speaks while campaigning for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, at the Ohio Education Association, Wednesday, March 9, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Attendees take cell phone photos of President Bill Clinton as he campaigns for his wife, Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, at the Ohio Education Association, Wednesday, March 9, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton reacts after being introduced before speaking during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Supporters cheer as Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Supporters watch as Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
A man holds up an iPad to get a photo of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaking during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton shakes hands with supporters after speaking during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton steps to the podium to speak during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally at Cuyahoga Community College Tuesday, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
An attendee wears a sticker on her cheek while waiting to hear Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, not pictured, speak during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, speaks during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, stands for a photograph with an attendee during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, speak during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An attendee wears a button in support of Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Attendees stand for the Pledge of Allegiance during a campaign event for Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, not pictured, in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, shakes hands with attendants while arriving to speak during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
CLEVELAND, OH - Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks to a gym full of supporters at Cuyahoga Community College during an election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - Supporters listen to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she speaks in a full gym at Cuyahoga Community College during an election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
An American flag is seen in the jacket pocket of an attendee during a campaign event for Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, not pictured, in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Clinton and Bernie Sanders made last bids for support in Michigan's Democratic primary Tuesday, with both arguing they would be able to navigate the gridlock in Washington that's spawned anger among voters of both political parties. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
CLEVELAND, OH - At Cuyahoga Community College, Clinton supporters wait at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - At Cuyahoga Community College, Clinton supporters pledge allegiance at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - At Cuyahoga Community College, Clinton supporters wait at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - Supporters listen to primary results just before former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke to a full gym at Cuyahoga Community College during an election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - Supporters listen to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she speaks in a full gym at Cuyahoga Community College during an election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - At Cuyahoga Community College, Clinton supporters pledge allegiance at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
An attendee waits for Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, not pictured, during a campaign event in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., on Tuesday, March 8, 2016. Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont and 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, scored an upset win over Clinton in the Michigan Democratic primary, overcoming the double-digit lead she held in polls ahead of the vote and proving he can win in a diverse industrial state. Photographer: Ty Wright/Bloomberg via Getty Images
CLEVELAND, OH - Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks to a gym full of supporters at Cuyahoga Community College during an election night rally in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday March, 8, 2016. (Photo by Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - MARCH 8: Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton speaks at the Recreation Center on the campus of the Cuyahoga Community College, March 8, 2016, in Cleveland, Ohio. Clinton is campaigning in Ohio ahead of the primary on March 15. (Photo by J.D. Pooley/Getty Images)
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Private affair: Clinton's use of a private email address and server while running the State Department has proven to have staying power as an issue through the presidential campaign — for both parties.

Clinton's Democratic primary rival, Bernie Sanders, famously told the former secretary of state during an October debate that the "American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails."

Sanders conceded at the time that taking that stance may not have been "great politics," though his dismissal of the email issue drew an ovation from the debate audience.

Source: YouTube

But the Vermont senator's wife, Jane, revived the issue as recently as Thursday, saying in a Fox Business appearance that while Team Sanders doesn't want to politicize the investigation, "it would be nice if the FBI moved it along."

Her position was sure to please Sanders fans who are keeping the faith despite their candidate's waning chances of overcoming Clinton and winning the presidential nomination.

Republican pile-on: On the GOP side, frontrunner Donald Trump has pounded away on the email scandal. He started calling it a "criminal problem" for Clinton early in the cycle, and has maintained it could be her ultimate undoing — although he said this month he's not confident she'll be indicted.

Clinton has said she used the personal address as a matter of pure convenience. She turned over 55,000 pages of emails from her private account — some of which contained secret information — while deleting about the same amount.

While Clinton has painted herself as eager to cooperate with the investigation, the State Department's own inspector general has said her responses to Freedom of Information requests for the emails were sluggish and incomplete.

The upshot: For better or worse for Clinton and her opponents, Lynch has made clear this investigation is running on its own clock, independent of the approaching election.

See Hillary and Bill Clinton through the years:


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Bill and Hillary Clinton falling in love throwbacks
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Attorney general says Hillary Clinton email probe may not be settled anytime soon
President Clinton gives first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton a kiss at a $1,000-A-plate fund raiser in Little Rock, Ark., on Friday, June 23, 1995. Vice President Al Gore and his wife Tipper also attended the event. Clinton told partisans, many of whom had supported him through many campaigns, It s my last election. I ll never run for anything else. (AP Photo/Marcy Nighswander)
President and Mrs. Clinton take a walk along the Gros Ventre River in Jackson Hole, Wyo., Thursday, Aug. 17, 1995. The Clinton's stopped to take a walk enroute to actor Harrison Ford's house for dinner. (AP Photo/Doug Mills)
First lady Hillary Rodham Clinton caresses her husband, President Clinton, during the ceremony celebrating the 75th anniversary of women's right to vote at Grand Teton National Park, Wyo., on Saturday, Aug. 26, 1995. (AP Photo/Doug Mills)
Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton comforts Hillary Rodham Clinton on the set of the news program '60 Minutes' after a stage light unexpectedly broke loose from the ceiling and knocked her down, January 26, 1992. (Photo by CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 14: Certain Democratic presidential nominee Bill Clinton (R) is applauded by his wife Hillary 14 July 1992, before his address to the Women's Caucus of the 1992 Democratic National Convention, New York. Clinton is campaigning in New York along with his running mate Sen. Al Gore. (Photo credit should read MARK PHILLIPS/AFP/Getty Images)
1993: American statesman Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States, and his wife, lawyer Hillary Rodham Clinton, have a laugh together on Capitol Hill, Washington DC. (Photo by Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 27: First Lady Hillary Clinton (L) laughs after introducing US President Bill Clinton 27 April in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. The President and First Lady were attending a celebration marking the 25th anniversary of the Kennedy Center. (Photo credit should read RICHARD ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, : US President Bill Clinton (R) gets a hug from his wife Hillary after the presidential debate 16 October at Shiley Theater at the University of San Diego in California. This is the last debate prior to the 05 presidential election. AFP PHOTO Vince BUCCI (Photo credit should read Vince Bucci/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, : US President Bill Clinton (R) leans towards US First Lady Hillary Clinton 17 July in the East Room of the White House during a ceremony for the Friends of Art and Preservation in Embassies Program. Arkansas court watchers are expecting President Clinton to testify by videotape 17 July in the criminal trial of two former associates. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO/Paul J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
291964 06: (NO NEWSWEEK - NO USNEWS) President Bill Clinton and his wife Hillary dance at an inaugural ball January 20, 1997 in Washington, DC. Clinton attended various inaugural balls after his defeat of Bob Dole in the national presidential election. (Photo by Cynthia Johnson/Liaison)
PHILADELPHIA, : US President Bill Clinton has his chin pinched by First Lady Hillary Clinton during kick-off ceremonies for the Presidents' Summit for America's Future at the Marcus Foster Stadium 27 April in Philadelphia, PA. The Clintons were joined by the Vice President, and former Presidents Bush, and Carter for the volunteerism campaign. AFP PHOTO PAUL J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
ST. THOMAS, UNITED STATES: US President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton dance on the beach of Megan Bay, St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands 04 January shortly after taking a swim. The President and his family concluded their vacation on the tropical island and are returning to Washington. (ELECTRONIC IMAGE) AFP PHOTO/PAUL J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 10: (NO U.S. TABLOID SALES) U.S President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton smile at each other during a Democratic Business Leaders event September 10, 1998 in Washington D.C. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
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