CNN shows go on, despite series of power outages

By Chris Ariens 

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The power is still not fully restored in the neighborhood that is home to CNN’s Washington Bureau. The network may need to produce today’s late afternoon shows on generator power after a series of outages left the network without primary and backup power for several hours last night.

“The Washington Bureau and every piece of television equipment inside was down,” writes bureau chief Sam Feist in an email to staff, obtained by TVNewser.

Three hours of CNN’s programming a day comes from Washington — “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer” from 5-7pmET and “John King USA” at 7pm. Feist writes, “Remarkably, both Wolf and John King even had prompter and unless we had told our viewers otherwise, they might never have known something was up.”

In the middle of the outage, CNN’s Dana Bash and CNN producer Ted Barrett were on Capitol Hill getting comments — or no comments — from Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) about so-called Weiner-gate. At one point, Weiner called Barrett a “jackass.” The entire tape of the testy, abrupt news conference (video after the jump) was played during the 6pmET hour of “The Situation Room” which Blitzer anchored from the plaza in front of the bureau.

“After 20 years at CNN, I’ve seen a lot of CNN heroes and I’ve seen our colleagues pull off some remarkable feats,” writes Feist. “Today goes near the top of the list for me. Because of the work of hundreds and hundreds of our colleagues in New York, Atlanta, and DC who literally leapt into action – CNN kept its DC-based programs on the air and in fact produced some outstanding and flawless newscasts.”