Sen. Dianne Feinstein and several aides, including a pregnant woman, were stuck in a Capitol elevator for about 15 minutes Thursday afternoon.
"I think we'll do another elevator," the relieved California Democrat said with a smile when she was finally freed after workers replaced a broken fuse.
The passengers were stuck between the second and third floors, just off the Senate floor, in an ornate elevator marked for "Senators only." When maintenance workers arrived, they pried the doors open exposing from the third floor the top six inches of the lighted compartment. The Intelligence Committee chairwoman, who will turn 80 this week, could be seen patiently standing inside, clearly more concerned about the welfare of her pregnant aide that anything else.
The group turned down offers of water but all were obviously pleased to peer up and see U.S. Capitol Police officers, Senate doorkeepers, and even Sergeant-at-Arms Terry Gainer standing by to assist.
Feinstein said she was "not particularly" unnerved by the experience.
"We were trying to figure out how to deliver on the elevator," Feinstein laughed as she double-checked on the expecting mom.