Al Gore Misses a Democratic Get-Together

And now the most intriguing two minutes in television, the latest from the political grapevine:

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Too Busy to Show Up?
Conspicuously missing from the parade of Democratic luminaries addressing that Democratic Leadership Council meeting in New York this week was former Vice President Al Gore. Even though he was once a leader of the group, Gore begged off, saying he had a "prior commitment." But ABC reports that at the very time Senator Hillary Clinton was at the DLC excoriating the Bush economic record, Al Gore was over at the Regency Hotel, less than a mile away, having lunch with a member of the Tisch family, noted for its financial support of Democrats.

Keeping His Sex Life Private?
A defiant Gary Condit says he would never admit to the news media that he had a sexual affair with Chandra Levy. In an interview in the upcoming issue of Esquire, Condit says, "They want me to say that I did her. Not gonna do it. Not gonna do it." As for his TV interview with Connie Chung, now with CNN but then with ABC News, Condit says,  "She wasn't gettin' anything out of me. She wasn't going to break me, no way." Of Chung's performance, he says, "If anyone bothers to watch the tape, they'll see where she went into a daze, she just lost it."

School Sued Over Show and Tell
A Massachusetts school system has been sued over what happened when second graders in the Leominster school district were told to bring a book to class about their Christmas traditions. Seven-year-old Laura Greska says she brought a book called The Christmas Story, about the birth of Jesus Christ. But she says she was stopped from reading it by her teacher, who said the book was not permitted because it was religious. The lawsuit, filed by the American Center for Law and Justice, a public interest group, wants the school's action declared a violation of the girl's First Amendment rights.

Boxers or Briefs?
The Washington Post has now corrected its report on an incident three weeks ago at Miami International Airport when Washington socialite Marc D'Anselme, who is also a French count, became annoyed when asked by a security screener to turn over his belt. The Post reported that he dropped his pants and exposed himself. Now, though, the Post says that was incorrect because, according to police, he was wearing underwear.