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Condit Camp States No Decision Has Been Made on Reelection Run

Aired September 7, 2001 - 13:37   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: We're continuing to follow developments in the Gary Condit story.

CNN's Bob Franken now from Washington with the latest on that -- Bob.

BOB FRANKEN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Lou, CNN has learned that Congressman Gary Condit's office is about to put out a statement regarding reports that he has decided that he is going to not seek reelection. This is a draft copy of the statement that's going to be released soon, according to two sources -- two top sources, well-informed sources connected to Congressman Gary Condit.

I'm just going to read it; it's a two-sentence statement, and I quote: "Media reports today that Congressman Condit has made a decision regarding the 2002 campaign are inaccurate. No such decision has been made."

That is the statement that is expected to be put out shortly by Congressman Gary Condit's office. Of course, the congressman, ever since the Chandra Levy controversy has gone on, has been the subject of rumors and speculation that he would announce that he was going to end his political career. Those rumors -- talk about that have increased a lot ever since the interviews that he did a couple of weeks ago. Interviews that did not go well by just all accounts.

As a matter of fact, members of the family who have appeared on the "LARRY KING" show said that there is an ongoing conversation going on within the family about whether Condit should, in fact, continue.

There's been some speculation he would resign. Almost anybody that I have talked to in my time out in Modesto, California and other sources say that's highly unlikely, but that he could very well make the decision, ultimately, that he's going to resign.

But by all accounts, according to sources, and in this statement today, he has not made that decision. It was expected for a while he might make it before he left Modesto to come back to Washington. Then we were told he might make it after he discussed this with some of his colleagues. The next hallmark to look for would be a fund-raiser that he has about the middle of the month in October. And then, of course, the filing deadline in California, which is early -- it's December 7.

But again, I want to read the statement from Condit's office: "Media reports today that Congressman Condit has reached the decision regarding the 2002 campaign are inaccurate. No such decision has been made."

The sources emphasize that's a draft statement, but they say that they expect it to go out shortly -- Lou.

WATERS: Bob, we're also getting word out of Modesto, California that that civil grand jury out there has reached a decision on whether or not to investigate claims that representative Condit obstructed justice by asking a flight attendant -- that would be Anne Marie Smith -- to deny that she had had an affair with Gary Condit. What more do you know about that?

FRANKEN: Well, I can tell you that the approach was originally made to the criminal grand jury. Of course obstruction of justice if, in fact, it's a valid charge in California in this case, obstruction of justice would be a criminal matter. Last week the district attorney of Stanislaus County in California told me that he had decided that there would not be an investigation; that there was no applicable law which applied in the state of California.

So now there's been a move to go to the civil case grand jury, which is one of the oddities in California law, that they have one. And now there's another process going on.

But the district attorney who would, of course, handle the criminal matter -- his name is Jim Brazelton -- has already told CNN that it was not his plan to investigate this.

WATERS: All right, Bob Franken in Washington as we continue to follow developments in the Gary Condit story.

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