For a few hours on Wednesday, the legislative process was moving a lot faster on Google Maps than it was on Capitol Hill.
While a bipartisan resolution introduced by Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., proposes to rename the Russell Senate Office Building after the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., someone had already changed the building's name as it appears within the popular Google Maps application. A Google spokesperson told ABC News that the change was inadvertent, and that they were going to switch the name back.
"We empower people to contribute their local knowledge to the map, but we recognize that there may be occasional inaccuracies or premature changes suggested by users. When this happens, we work to address as quickly as possible. We have implemented a fix for this issue that is rolling out now," the spokesperson said.
In explaining his desire to rename the building, Schumer said it would be a “fitting tribute” for a public servant who spent the most significant years of his career working out of an office there. The building also houses the Senate Armed Services Committee, which McCain previously led as chairman.
“It need not be the only way we honor Senator McCain,” Schumer added in a floor speech Monday. “We can honor him by trying to carry out the principles he lived by. We can try, as he did, to put country before party. We can try, as he did, to speak truth to power. And we can try, as he summoned us to try, to restore the Senate to its rightful place in our national political life.”
Schumer also noted that while Sen. Richard Russell, whose name McCain’s would replace, was a “towering figure” in the Senate, he was a segregationist, and as the leader of southern senators, he used the filibuster maneuver to kill civil rights legislation.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has not yet weighed in on the Russell renaming proposal, but he has suggested several other ideas, including renaming the Senate Armed Services Committee room after McCain. McConnell also said he will establish a working group of senators to figure out how to best honor McCain's legacy on Capitol Hill.
The Google Maps action comes a day after President Donald Trump accused the company of suppressing search results that were favorable to conservatives and his administration.
In response, a Google spokesperson said, in part, “When users type queries into the Google Search bar, our goal is to make sure they receive the most relevant answers in a matter of seconds. Search is not used to set a political agenda and we don't bias our results toward any political ideology.”