In a light moment during Jim Comey's testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sen. Angus King (I-ME) and the former FBI director exchanged quips over a broken dinner date between Comey and his wife.

The back-and-forth followed King's question regarding President Donald trump's contention – in an interview with NBC's Lester Holt – that it was Comey who initiated the invitation to have dinner with Trump at the White House on January 27, supposedly because "he wanted to stay on" as FBI head.

Comey chuckled when asked if he had initiated that dinner. He supplied a detailed account of the phone call he said Trump placed to him at lunchtime on that day. Trump asked him, he said, if six o'clock would be a good time, and finally suggested six thirty.

After hanging up, Comey said, he called his wife because he had to cancel a dinner date that they had set for the same night.

"That's one of the all-time best excuses for breaking a dinner date," quipped King, to the sound of laughter in the hall.

"In retrospect, I love spending time with my wife – I wish I had been there that night," Comey fired back – this time to rolling laughter.