Tell us your experience, Caroline

SYRACUSE, NY -- On the way out of Syracuse City Hall this morning, Caroline Kennedy briefly addressed about 20 reporters and photographers:



"I just wanted to say, as some of you may have heard, I've told Gov. Paterson that I'd be honored to be considered for the position of United States senator. I wanted to come upstate and meet with Mayor Driscoll and others to tell them about my experience and also to learn more about how Washington can help these communities," Kennedy told reporters. "There's a lot of good people, candidates, that the governor is considering. He's laid out a process. I'm proud to be in that process."

"What do you say to New Yorkers who think you're not qualified?" a newspaper reporter asked.

She ignored the question and started to leave.

"Are you ready for this, Ms. Kennedy? You're not going to answer questions at all?" reporters yelled.

"Where are you heading next?" a television reporter asked.

"To the car," Kennedy said.

"What do you say to New Yorkers who think you're not ready or qualified for this job?"

"Have you ever been to Syracuse before?"

"Hopefully I can come back and answer all your questions," Kennedy said as reporters followed her outside.

"What do you think your greatest qualification is to be senator?" a reporter persisted.

"You're seeking public office and you don't want to answer questions from reporters, Ma'am? When can we expect you to answer questions?" another reporter asked as Kennedy got into the passenger seat of a black GMC Denali.

She closed the vehicle's door and it pulled away.

This exchange took place just after Kennedy met with Driscoll for about half-an-hour.

After the meeting, Driscoll said he talked to Kennedy about the need for high-speed, uninterrupted rail service linking Upstate cities, about the environmental and green movements in Central New York and about the challenges facing downtown Syracuse.

The mayor said he got the sense she was "well-read" and was aware of those issues, but said, "I can't say if I got any sense one way or the other" about her her knowledge of Upstate New York.

He said that Kennedy did not say if she had ever been to Syracuse before.

Kennedy left City Hall at 11:55 a.m. to head to meetings in Rochester and Buffalo.