Capitol Hill Buzz: Russian news site interrupts C-SPAN

Capitol Hill Buzz: Russian news site interrupts C-SPAN

WASHINGTON — Moscow, we have a problem.

Web surfers expecting to tune into C-SPAN’s online feed of debate in the House on Thursday instead saw images supplied by the Russian news site RT, which briefly interrupted programming on the network’s website.

Spokesman Howard Mortman said the website, www.c-span.org , was replaced by RT for about 10 minutes. The problem was likely a routing issue, since RT is one of the networks that C-SPAN regularly monitors, he said.

The network is “investigating and troubleshooting this occurrence,” Mortman said. The network later said it doesn’t believe it was hacked.

The programming glitch came hours after a power outage interrupted a Senate confirmation hearing for Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kan., to head the CIA. The hearing reconvened in a different room.

The Architect of the Capitol’s office said a local power company “de-energized” a system that feeds power to the Hart Senate Office Building. The office said the power company, Pepco, quickly restored the lost power.

The architect’s office said it is examining the surge-breaker that was unexpectedly affected by the planned Pepco work.

Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., later said she found it curious that she had just begun criticizing a Republican bill she contended would damage the regulatory authority of the Securities and Exchange Commission when the RT programming broke in. She also was criticizing President-elect Donald Trump for choosing someone with deep ties to Wall Street to lead the SEC.

“Placed in the context of current events concerning cyberattacks and foreign interference in our elections, it is very important that C-SPAN provide a clear and concise explanation for the interruption of its online broadcast before we can reach any conclusions or establish the basis for additional inquiry,” Waters said in a statement.

Matthew Daly, The Associated Press