USA

Sen. Tester says ‘holy s–t, I thought we had better technology’ at hearing

Montana Democratic Sen. Jon Tester grew frustrated — and a bit profane — at a mostly virtual Senate committee hearing on Thursday after technical issues garbled his question.

“Holy s–t, I thought we had better technology than this,” Tester told Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin at the Senate Banking Committee hearing.

Mnuchin struggled to hear Tester’s inquiry about data security for American Indians amid the COVID-19 pandemic. On the third attempt, Mnuchin heard the question and promised to look into it.

Tester, a farmer and former teacher known for his flat-top haircut and folksy manner, was reelected in 2018 to a third term representing Montana.

He’s far from alone in feeling frustrated about technology as the pandemic expands digital operations for disproportionately elderly lawmakers.

Democratic Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware threw a fit last month when he nearly missed his turn to grill Postmaster General Louis DeJoy at a hearing on election mail.

“F–k, F–k, F–k!” Carper said, swiveling in his chair to bark the expletives at an aide.

The aide walked over to Carper’s desk and helped him work his livestream, which apparently had his audio feed muted.

“Like most Americans in 2020, Senator Carper got frustrated with technical difficulties this morning,” his office said.

Tester’s spokespeople did not immediately reply to an inquiry.

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