It was their exchange on Obama’s veto threat that caused the committee chamber to burst into laughter.
Rogers: “Would the gentleman yield?
McGovern: I happily yield.
Rogers: You say the president has threatened to veto the bill?
McGovern: No, he hasn’t threatened. He said he absolutely will veto.
Rogers: He’s drawn a red line has he?
At this point, the small hearing room—which was largely filled with committee members, other members of Congress who had come to testify and congressional staff—burst into laughter.
Rep. McGovern, smiling, then stated his belief that the president was serious about the just-issued veto threat.