New York Caroline Kennedy emerged from weeks of near-silence Friday about her bid for a Senate seat by saying that after a lifetime of closely guarded privacy, she felt compelled to answer the call to service issued by her father a generation ago.
She said two events shaped her decision to ask Gov. David Paterson 11 days ago to consider her for the position if Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton is confirmed as secretary of state: the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and her work for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.
In her first sit-down interview since she emerged as a Senate hopeful, the 51-year-old daughter of President John F. Kennedy cited her father’s legacy in explaining her decision to seek to serve alongside her Uncle Edward Kennedy, the Massachusetts Senator.
“Many people remember that spirit that President Kennedy summoned forth,” she said. “Many people look to me as somebody who embodies that sense of possibility. I’m not saying that I am anything like him, I’m just saying there’s a spirit that I think I’ve grown up with that is something that means a tremendous amount to me.”