Caroline Kennedy announced early Thursday that she was withdrawing from consideration for the vacant Senate seat in New York, startling the state’s political world after weeks in which she was considered a top contender for the post.
“I informed Governor Paterson today that for personal reasons I am withdrawing my name from consideration for the United States Senate,” Ms. Kennedy said in a statement released by her public relations firm.
Ms. Kennedy did not elaborate, but a person who spoke to her suggested that her concerns about the health of her uncle, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, who suffers from brain cancer and was hospitalized after a seizure on Tuesday, contributed to her decision.
Ms. Kennedy believed that the job was hers if she would accept it, the person said, but aides to Mr. Paterson would not comment on whether that was true.
Her decision appeared to catch the governor off guard, throwing the Paterson administration into confusion and setting off conflicting news media reports. After frantic talks between the governor’s operation and Ms. Kennedy’s camp Wednesday evening, Ms. Kennedy appeared to waver on whether to withdraw, and was preparing a statement reasserting her interest in the job. But just after midnight, she decided to make clear she was taking her name out of consideration and released the statement saying so.
Ms. Kennedy declined to be interviewed.
Fare the well, Queen Caroline. Or, as us serfs like to put it: DLTDHYOTWO*!
*That’s “Don’t Let The Door Hit You On The Way Out” for those who do not rub elbows with the commoners.
CBS News said overnight that Governor Patterson of New York was preparing to name someone else to the vacant seat of Hillary Clinton so Caroline Kennedy withdrew her name. There was also talk that Carolie felt compelled to spend more time with family, especialy her uncle Ted….
The New York Post said, “State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who has polled higher than Kennedy in public-opinion surveys, was seen as rising on the list of possible replacements.”
Kennedy’s decision caught even some close to her by surprise, and there were conflicting versions last night of what transpired.
Sources close to Kennedy said she had decided to bow out for “personal” reasons.
But others said she made her move after it became clear Paterson wasn’t going to pick her for the seat.