New York

Ex-US senator escorted off plane for making a commotion

Former senator Alfonse D'Amato arrives at the Frank E. Campbell funeral home for the wake of former Governor of New York Mario Cuomo in the Manhattan borough of New York January 5, 2015.      REUTERS/Mike Segar   (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY POLITICS OBITUARY) - RTR4K5D4

Former senator Alfonse D'Amato arrives at the Frank E. Campbell funeral home for the wake of former Governor of New York Mario Cuomo in the Manhattan borough of New York January 5, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY POLITICS OBITUARY) - RTR4K5D4

Former U.S. Sen. Alfonse D'Amato of New York was escorted off a plane for making a commotion after a 6½-hour delay.

The incident occurred Monday night in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

A witness told the New York Post that passengers were already cranky when the JetBlue crew asked people who'd paid for extra legroom to switch seats because of weight and balance issues.

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The 79-year-old Republican ex-senator was in a regular seat and led a chant, "Make them move."

Video shows D'Amato saying, "They're throwing me off the plane because I complained about what they were doing."

D'Amato's spokesman says he was sleep-deprived after visiting an ailing friend.

JetBlue says passengers can be removed if there's a situation that could escalate.

D'Amato represented New York from 1981 to 1999.