Democratic senator swears on-air at Postal Service hearing: 'F---, f---, f---'

Sen. Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperFive ways Senate could change Biden's spending plan Advocates see pilot program to address inequalities from highways as crucial first step Democrats plow ahead as Manchin yo-yos MORE (D-Del.) swore on-air after an apparent glitch during a Senate virtual hearing Friday on the Postal Service threatened to prevent him from joining the hearing.

The episode began when Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonWisconsin senators ask outsiders not to exploit parade attack 'for their own political purposes' It's time to bury ZombieCare once and for all Marjorie Taylor Greene introduces bill to award Congressional Gold Medal to Rittenhouse MORE (R-Wis.) invited Carper to speak. 

"Sen. Carper," he said, to silence, as the camera stayed on Johnson. "Is Sen. Carper there?"

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"Sen. [James] Lankford," Johnson then said, seeking to move on.

"F---, f---, f---," Carper then could be heard saying as the camera was suddenly on his office.

Carper appeared to be speaking to an aide, who then leaned into the screen.

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"Senator, I think Sen. Carper is there," Lankford (R-Okla.) then said, signaling Carper would be able to speak. 

"Sen. Carper can you unmute?" a seemingly amused Johnson then said as it became clear that Carper would be able to join the hearing and question Postmaster General Louis DeJoyLouis DeJoyThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Arbery case, Biden spending bill each test views of justice Biden nominates two picks to replace members of US Postal Service board Postal Service loss nearly halved MORE.

"We don't want to be on TV again," said a smiling Johnson, the chairman of the panel.

Carper then went into his questioning. 

Virtual hearings have become regular in Washington to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, forcing lawmakers to take part in hearings from offices around the country. 

Carper later seemed to address the incident in a message on Twitter, writing that he gets "fired up" over the Postal Service, which has been at the center of a political storm amid slowdowns and fears this could hurt the ability of Americans to vote by mail this November.