After weeks of speculation, Bob Kerrey has announced that he won't be running for Chuck Hagel's Senate seat in Nebraska and that he will instead remain president of the New School in New York. "I nearly said yes to leaving," he said in a statement just released by the school. But, he added, "for my family and me now is not the time for me to reenter politics as a candidate." Kerrey's statement did not address worries some Democrats had over his recently revealed connections to jailed controversial fund-raiser Norman Hsu. But he did say he would not stay out of political debates. "I am deeply troubled about the direction of our country. And the idea of returning home to Nebraska to lead a political campaign based on a promise to do my part to change the direction was very appealing," he explained. "Some argue that university presidents should avoid public debates and controversy. I believe differently and, fortunately for me, so do the trustees of The New School."
Related:Bob Kerrey, Cockblocker [NYM]
Former Nebraska senator and '92 presidential candidate Bob Kerrey's perch at the New School seems to have made him a New York partisan: He says he "probably won't" make any '08 endorsements, but he did tout two locals as his candidates of choice. "I like Hillary a lot," he said at the annual Parsons benefit last week. "I think she's been a great senator for New York and has a tremendous amount of experience. And I got to say I think Bloomberg's done a phenomenal job. I'd be very comfortable with Hillary or Bloomberg." But Bloomberg insists he won't run. And neither will Kerrey, for that matter. "I have no elective political aspirations for '08," Kerrey said. "But everything I do is political. Aren't you going to ask me about Parsons? About fashion?" Okay — who's your favorite designer? "I don't have one." Any thoughts on the skinny-model controversy? "Yes, but I'm not going to give you them. Most of my thoughts about the models are not publishable." Glad we asked. —Amy Odell
Could there be a better day to take your boat for a walk? Students at Eugene Lang College the New School for Liberal Arts spent all semester building a boat they christened this morning. They built the Quixotic near Union Square and then pushed it west to Pier 40 (shown here on West 11 Street crossing Sixth Avenue). Ain't the liberal arts grand?