April 30, 2004



In a stunning snub, two Democrats on the 9/11 commission yesterday abruptly walked out in the middle of the Oval Office interview with President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.

Both early-departing panelists, former Nebraska Sen. Bob Kerrey and ex-Indiana Rep. Lee Hamilton, insisted they had prior commitments - but their sudden slip out the side door of the White House left Washington and some fellow commission members in shock.

Kerrey dashed to handle a private business matter - lobbying Sen. Pete Domenici (R-N.M.) for more money for his employer, the New School University in Manhattan.

Hamilton bolted so that he could introduce the Canadian prime minister at a ceremonial event at the Woodrow Wilson Center, which employs Hamilton as its director.

"I was surprised," fellow commission member James Thompson told The Post.

The sudden walkouts while Bush and Cheney were still testifying are all the more surprising because the commission had lobbied for months for unlimited time with the president with all 10 commissioners able to participate.

On the one hand, that's as much attention as their work deserves. On the other, neither man could be bothered to examine any of the evidence that was collected for the Clinton impeachment.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 30, 2004 4:31 PM

So.....what's the lesson we've learned here, class?

Posted by: John Resnick at April 30, 2004 4:48 PM

I think Kerrey has gone off the deep end. On another but related subject: have you noted anything strange about Ted Kennedy's interviews on TV lately ... or the Byrdman's. Are Democrats
listening to those they voted for? What, they worry?

Posted by: genecis at April 30, 2004 5:16 PM

To add to this, you have Bob Kerry's simply inappropriate performance the hight before on Comedy Central (no joke). Read Michele Malkin's assessment on NRO. When this is all said and done, Bob Kerry's, Lee Hamilton's and Tom Kean's reputations will be down there with Ben Veniste's and Gorelick's.

Posted by: MG at April 30, 2004 5:25 PM

I live in Nebraska and I've disliked Bob Kerrey for a long time. The guy is strange.

Posted by: pchuck at April 30, 2004 5:38 PM

Mr. Judd;

And they're not going to examine any of the evidence in this case either. At least they're consistent.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at April 30, 2004 6:05 PM

I never had any interest in a commission, but if there had to be one, it should not have included any present or former elected officials, nor any present or former federal employees.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at April 30, 2004 10:06 PM

Let alone people who could use the Commission as a pulpit to blame their own shortcomings on others (and yes, Ms. Gorelick, I'm looking at you).

Posted by: John Barrett Jr. at April 30, 2004 11:19 PM

Perhaps if Jon Stewart had been in the Oval Office with Bush and Cheney they would have been able to keep Senator Kerrey around a while longer.

Posted by: John at April 30, 2004 11:31 PM

Why the heck didn't Bush and Cheney walk out about ten minutes after Hamilton and Kerrey?

Cheney, "Oh shucks! I gotta check some porno deliveries to my secret Bunker!"

Bush, "Well guys, stay and enjoy your Oval Office visit all ya want, but I have another engagement. Thank those two guys for me, will ya.... - - I woulda forgot about my prior commitment if they hadn't reminded me about the importance of not letting this thing muck up the gears of important government matters."

Posted by: Larry H at May 2, 2004 9:54 AM
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