This wasn't how Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Blair, wanted to start his first hearing as chairman of the U.S. House Transportation Committee.
Instead of opening with his prepared statement about infrastructure investment and navigation rights, he began with an apology.
"Last night I was quoted in response to the State of the Union address that [President Barack Obama] was lying," Mr. Shuster said. "I regret using those words."
He had been quoted this way in Politico: "I think he's lying about CEO's – they want to invest in a country that has high-speed rail. Really? Tell me what CEO said that, that cares about high-speed rail."
He backpedaled this morning.
"I regret using those words," Mr. Shuster said. "While I continue to disagree with the president on these things I do not think the president is a liar."