A top State Department spokesman on Thursday boasted that his department is open and transparent, but could hardly finish the sentence before erupting in laughter.

"Welcome to the State Department," spokesman Mark Toner said. "I think we have some interns in the back. Welcome. Good to see you in this exercise in transparency and democracy."

Toner then burst out laughing at his own comments as reporters in the room laughed with him.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to break out laughing there," he said. The incident prompted Associated Press reporter Matthew Lee to say, "I thought it was an exercise in spin and obfuscation."

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