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CNN Larry King Weekend

Encore Presentation: Cadee Condit Comes to Her Father's Defense

Aired September 08, 2001 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight: Gary Condit's daughter, Cadee. She quit her government job after her boss criticized her embattled dad, and now she speaks out in his defense for the first time. Cadee Condit is next on LARRY KING WEEKEND.


KING: You learn something new everyday. This is Cadee Condit's first major appearance on television ever. It's a great pleasure to have her here, and we learn that she worked for CNN as an intern in Washington, in the: when?


KING: In what group did you work?

CONDIT: Financial News. For Kelli Arena.

KING: Wow. Was it a summer?

CONDIT: It was a summer internship. I learned a lot. I learned a lot. I learned that I didn't want to go into media.

KING: Really?

CONDIT: I did.

KING: Did you think about being in media first?

CONDIT: I did. And that summer, I think, wiped that out. It was a great experience and I learned a lot, but...

KING: Did you stay with your dad?

CONDIT: I did.

KING: Did he encourage you to take that job with CNN?

CONDIT: He encouraged me to do anything that would help me find out what I wanted to be when I grow up, so he was always very supportive.

KING: And that decision now is what now that, now that you're out, I'll talk about it working...

CONDIT: Now that I'm unemployed.

KING: What do you want to do now that you're unemployed?

CONDIT: I don't know. I'm not sure. You have any ideas?

KING: Well, you're a natural for this business.

CONDIT: Well, thank you. I appreciate that.

KING: Maybe you'll reinterest in it.

CONDIT: Maybe.

KING: How's, how's all this been for you?

CONDIT: This has been horrible. I mean, it's just absolutely the worst thing to watch your mom and dad be demonized by the press. It's just been absolutely horrible.

KING: Do you put any blame on your dad?

CONDIT: No, I don't.

KING: None at all?

CONDIT: No. Not at all.

KING: well, how about those, well, even your brother said maybe he should have come forward sooner. I mean, that's an opinion that he should have come out sooner and discussed this sooner. What are your thoughts?

CONDIT: Well, this wasn't a popularity contest, or a mission to save Gary Condit's career. This was about finding Chandra Levy. And he went to the appropriate people. He got the law enforcement involved. He got the FBI involved. So, by him holding a press conference, no, I don't think that would have changed things?

KING: Do you think an interview might have changed things?

CONDIT: Well, it didn't.

KING: But a sit-down interview earlier might have changed things.

CONDIT: Well, you know the press would have said if he would have done that, that he was taking the focus away from Chandra and her family. You know, it would have played the total opposite way. He didn't want, he wanted people to focus on finding Chandra Levy. And he did everything he could to do that. Met with the law enforcement, started a reward fund.

KING: All right, but before we get into the whole story, you quit the governor's office? CONDIT: Yes.

KING: And when your brother was on this show, he said there's no honor in kicking someone when they're down, reacting to what the governor had said. When did you make that decision, of course, you left here that day -- you didn't say anything to us: and then the next day. When did you make it, was it on the plane going home?

CONDIT: No. It was right when we saw the governor on TV.

KING: Oh, so you knew that day?

CONDIT: We knew that day.

KING: Were you very disappointed?

CONDIT: I was disappointed, but not shocked.

KING: Because?

CONDIT: Well, I've worked for the governor for nearly three years, and I know that he doesn't have very many friends that don't help him, either politically or financially, and I guess he felt the congressman couldn't help him politically anymore.

KING: You mean he was your standard for who could help him?

CONDIT: Pretty much.

KING: Yeah, but you did what for him?

CONDIT: I, the last thing I did for him, I worked in his executive office. I did a lot of VIP stuff, worked right outside of his office.

KING: So, you saw him every day?


KING: Did your father get you that job?

CONDIT: No. He didn't get me that job. You know, I started out in the governor's office in the mail room.

KING: He got you that job?

CONDIT: He introduced me to the governor and the governor offered me the job. But I went from the mail room to the press office to the advance office, and then the governor moved me into his private office.

KING: Is it true that after this, the governor did call you? After he got your resignation...

CONDIT: Yes, he did.

KING: And what did he say?

CONDIT: He said that Chad and I were welcome to come and work for him anytime.

KING: And what did you say?

CONDIT: That he didn't need to make the statement that he had made.

KING: Did he defend the statement?

CONDIT: He said, a few things. I'm not going to get into the phone call. That wouldn't be fair to him, but he defended the statement to a certain point.

KING: So you were not disappointed nor surprised?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: Because of your knowledge of the governor?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: Have a lot of people jumped off the ship?

CONDIT: Oh, I think there's just a bandwagon to bash Gary Condit when he's down. You know, I don't understand why the governor and Mr. Gephardt are so interested in my dad coming forward about intimate details of his relationships. You know, he was forthcoming with law enforcement, and that was the most important thing.

KING: But as we discussed with your brother, and your brother is here today, by the way, and so is your grandfather. Wonderful man, Reverend Adrian.


KING: As we discussed that day, by not letting it go, in today's real world, that wasn't, I mean, today's real world, if something breaks, you have to come out and talk about it.

CONDIT: That may be your world, because you're part of the press, but it's certainly not -- you know, Gary did what he thought was the best thing. He cooperated with law enforcement. Like I said, this wasn't a popularity contest he was trying to win, or save his career. He was trying to help find Chandra Levy. That's what his focus was.

KING: So where, Cadee, did it go wrong for him? The press didn't plan this as a coup. They don't dislike your father, most people, your father was a low-key, hard-working congressman.

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: Not widely shown...

CONDIT: But they didn't give into the press. And that's probably what went wrong for him.

KING: How did you feel toward him?

CONDIT: Toward my dad?

KING: Yeah.

CONDIT: Like I've always felt.

KING: Which is?

CONDIT: I'm very proud of my dad. I think he's handled himself as a gentleman throughout this. Very proud. His principles haven't changed when the pressures gotten harder and harder, the media has just hounded him, and his principles have not changed, and I respect that.

KING: When you first learned of all this, were you curious about Chandra?

CONDIT: Curious?

KING: Who was this? What was the involvement? As a daughter.

CONDIT: As a daughter, we sat down as a family and talked about it. And discussed it, and I'm OK with my dad. My dad and I have been good friends and we're going to remain that way. I was totally OK with that. With the 24-year-old thing, you know, people have said that we're close in age, I'm a grown woman, and anyone close to my age came make decisions for herself.

KING: So, if Chandra made those decisions, she made those decision, but you don't blame your father, if there was an involvement, you don't blame your father?

CONDIT: No, my dad had nothing to do with the disappearance of Chandra Levy. I don't blame him for anything.

KING: Even if there was an involvement?

CONDIT: Right, no. I'm OK with my dad. We've discussed this.

KING: A lot of, this is daddy-daughter day, huh? You're very close to him?

CONDIT: Very much so.

KING: Back with more of Cadee Condit on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit, her first appearance ever. By the way, why the decisions to come forward now?

CONDIT: Well, it's my turn to tell it to the King.

KING: But, your brother came on. His staff came on, etcetera. Is this, is this something, maybe Cadee, that should have happened sooner?

CONDIT: I know you want me to agree with you on this.

KING: No, no, because your brother did. No, he offered the purse-

CONDIT: I'm not going to agree with you. I don't, I think we did, we're new to this. I mean we've never dealt with anything like this. We did what we thought was the best thing as a family. And the reason I'm here tonight is because people have made my dad out to be this demon. He's the most loving, caring, compassionate man I know. Any who calls my dad a murderer, I'm going to come on your show and defend him.

KING: So, when you saw the interview with Connie Chung, how did you feel?


KING: What were you feeling?

CONDIT: I thought she was horrible. I really did. She didn't give Gary a chance to, for anyone to see who Gary Condit really is and to learn more about Chandra Levy, she didn't give him the chance. She was stuck on the sex question. She asked it eleven times in a thirty minute interview. When you start in your interview with the second question being, did you murder Chandra Levy, she couldn't have expected a very good interview from him.

KING: Do you think he could have done better?

CONDIT: Under the circumstances, no. I think he did well with the format. I mean, it was a tough interview. It was very tough. I was proud of him for not walking off the set.

KING: Marina Ein has left the PR team, and that got a lot of attention last week. Did you know her?

CONDIT: I have not met her.

KING: Talked to her?

CONDIT: I've talked to her, maybe once or twice.

KING: Were you surprised that she left?

CONDIT: You know, I wasn't in on the conversation on that, so I don't know very much about that.

KING: How much was the family involved in the total planning of this thing. Who the lawyers were? You know, the total involvement. Was this family decisions along the way?

CONDIT: A little bit here and there. Yeah. We definitely had family discussions about what's going on.

KING: I mean, did anyone say, Gary, speak out sooner?

CONDIT: I'm not going to tell you our dinner conversations.

KING: OK, but...

CONDIT: A few people in the family probably would have liked to seen him speak sooner.

KING: How has your mom done?

CONDIT: She is an amazing woman.

KING: Because this is very embarrassing for her.

CONDIT: I don't know about embarrassing, but it's been a tragedy. There's a missing girl, and...

KING: We're going to give that number out in a minute, we keep...

CONDIT: I hope you have the 1-800 number. So, there's a missing girls and someone's getting away with it, someone's out there getting away with this.

KING: Obviously.

CONDIT: And the press has just demonized him, like I said, they've made us out to be these mean, horrible people. And I have the most wonderful parents that would never harm anyone, so this has been a difficult time for both mom and dad.

KING: But when something breaks like this, a wife is going to be disturbed, it's in public, it's an embarrassment, but you're not married, but you can imagine what that must be like for her, and how she held up under it.

CONDIT: She's strong. She's doing a great job. She loves my dad very much, and he loves her.

KING: And if anything, she forgave.

CONDIT: If anything, she's standing right by him, yes.

KING: And do you give:that's an awful lot of credit to a person, to be able to do that in the face of what has become public humil -- your dad has been...

CONDIT: Humiliated.

KING: Humiliated. What's it been like for you? I know you've said terrible. But what's it like for you in daily living. You've had to quit your job over this. People know you, they recognize you., do they? What's it like?

CONDIT: The worst part for me is that: to watch my mom and dad go through this. The basics in life have been taken away from them. You can't walk outside the front yard because it's covered with press. He can't go in his backyard because they're helicopters over our house. He gets threat e-mail. We all get threat e-mail because of this. It's been tough. It's hard to watch someone that you love go through this. That's the hardest thing for me.

KING: Do you have any kind of social life?

CONDIT: I do.. I have some really good friends.

KING: Do you date?

CONDIT: I'm not here to talk about my personal life.

KING: No, I mean, what I'm trying to get, I'm don't care who you're dating, is are you able to construct any kind of normal being? A fellow calls for you, you go out to dinner, nobody looks at you from another table, he doesn't ask you?

CONDIT: I'm pretty low-key about things I do now.

KING: So it's changed you?

CONDIT: Uh-huh.

KING: And the blame you give is to us, the group us, I don't mean me individually, the media.

CONDIT: The media. The tabloids. The tabloids have been horrible. Absolutely horrible.

KING: What's it like when you see one of those headlines, one reporting last week that your mother got violent and threw everything around the house...


KING: ... in the supermarket? And people see them, and whether they buy them or not, they walk out at the check-out counter. You see them?


KING: What do you make of that?

CONDIT: It's horrible. But one morning Gary and I were having a cup of coffee and he was going to give me a heads-up to one of the tabloids. He said, Cad, I just want to give you a heads-up that they're going to come out with some awful stuff tomorrow. And I said, what are they going to say? And he said, well, they're going to say that I'm into that M and M, or M and S stuff. I didn't know to laugh or cry, I just said, dad, I think they mean S&M. You know, it's just knowing the people they're talking about and reading it, it's just, it can really upset you.

KING: So, your mother doesn't have a violent temper, and didn't throw things.

CONDIT: My mom can calm me with her voice or with her touch. There's nothing violent about Carolyn Condit. She's the loving, caring, wonderful woman.

KING: Both you and your brother call your dad by his first name. You always done that?

CONDIT: Always. Always.

KING: There are people that...

CONDIT: People think it's strange.

KING: It's not uncommon, though, I've seen it before. So you grew up that way?

CONDIT: I grew up that way.

KING: He was Gary when you were 6 years old?

CONDIT: Gary or dad. He'll answer to either.

KING: We'll be right back with more of Cadee Condit on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Anne Heche tomorrow night. The phone number, if you have any information about Chandra Levy, is 800-860- 6552. 800-860-6552. We'll be right back.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit. Again, with all the story swirling around, so, I want to understand something. As a daughter, and I have a daughter, a little older than you. There's nothing like a daughter. They're daddy people. You never said to yourself, "What did my father and Chandra have together?" You never asked yourself that?


KING: Because? I mean you had no curiosity over that? Which is what everyone asked you. Everyone in the country has put this on your dad because of what they presume to be -- and based on leaks from the police, a relationship between your father and this young intern.

CONDIT: Well see the most important thing, Mr. King, is my dad didn't hurt anyone. He had nothing to do with it.

KING: So otherwise, your father... CONDIT: Yes, because that was the most important thing that people out there, you know, saying my dad's suspicious, or he did something wrong, he did nothing wrong. Any curiosity that I may have had I asked, I went straight to the source, and I asked him.

KING: OK, and that satisfied to your satisfaction?

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: And it's none of our business.

CONDIT: No, it's none of anyone else's business except our family and law enforcement.

KING: If you were watching this, and it's hard to do this. And we'll step back, and this was someone else, Congressman Jones, and this were going on. And Congressman Jones didn't come forward, talk to the police, and didn't come forward. Wouldn't you say to your mind "I wonder why Congressman Jones?"

CONDIT: I hope not.

KING: You hope you wouldn't, but you might not?

CONDIT: I don't know. Now I wouldn't, and I can only go on how I feel right now. And I hope I would never question somebody like that.

KING: And when you don't, and unfortunately or fortunately -- in the nature of the day -- when you don't, you allow the other side, if there is another side, to keep pressing forward, right? They're going to keep running the stories, so you keep taking the hit.

CONDIT: I guess you can take a hit, yeah.

KING: So you've taken the hit?

CONDIT: We've taken -- oh, my family has taken many hits.

KING: Chosen to take many hits.

CONDIT: I know you think that my dad should have come out sooner, and held a press conference.

KING: No, or an interview or something, yeah. I think when you're under fire, today, maybe fifteen years ago, not today.

CONDIT: Well, the press isn't the church.


CONDIT: It's not.

KING: It's not a courtroom either.

CONDIT: And it's no courtroom. And the way my dad decided to do things was still with the law enforcement. That's the most important thing.

KING: So as long as he answered their questions to their satisfaction.

CONDIT: Right.

KING: That's all he had to do. Except, in truth, look at what's happened to him.

CONDIT: I know if we would have listened to political consultants, or you know, people that were trying to advise him so his career could be safe, sure we could have gone out and done this press conference or an interview. That's not what we were concerned about.

KING: So his only concern in this was the safety of a friend who was missing.

CONDIT: Yes. That's still his concern.

KING: And when he talked to you about it that was his concern?

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: And it is still his concern? Do you, your brother said he would vote against your father running for reelection. He's seen too much of politics. What would your vote be?

CONDIT: I'm torn. As his constituent, I would hate to see his style of politics go. He has an open door policy.

KING: Hands on.

CONDIT: Hands on. You know, my mom has got the phone numbers in the phone book. Anybody can call at any time with a problem. Hold sidewalk chats, people can come to his office without an appointment, and I love that. And I think that if he didn't run that that'd be a loss for the Valley. But as a daughter, no. He and my Mom deserve so much better than this, especially after 30 years of strong public service.

KING: So, it's 50/50?

CONDIT: 50/50, I'll stand by him, whatever he decides to do.

KING: You know what would happen if he does run, whoever runs against him, that's going to be the issue, and the story's going to stay alive, right. So you know, that you are going to have to live with this a lot longer if he does run. Just stand by whatever he does.

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: So your input is, I don't know. As a daughter, you mean the slings and arrows have been enough?

CONDIT: It's been pretty tough, yes. KING: How do you think your mom would feel?

CONDIT: You would have to ask her that.

KING: Do you think she'd want him to run?

CONDIT: Probably not.

KING: Because she was a very active wife of a congressman, right.

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: As we -- as the staff explained, they called her as much as they called him, right?

CONDIT: She was great.

KING: By the way, was she ill with anything?

CONDIT: She had encephalitis as a child, and there's some adult side effects of that which are headaches. And a few years back it was really bad. And we've dealt with that, and it's under control. But she's, I mean people have said she doesn't have fun, they try to get into her...


KING: Trying to get a little bit of pictures? And you've brought a lot of pictures, which we're showing throughout the show. We thank you for bringing them.

CONDIT: You're welcome.

KING: Encephalitis is a killer, isn't it? was a killer when I was...

CONDIT: She survived it.

KING: Because a high rate of death from it, encephalitis.

CONDIT: She had it as a little girl, so now she still has some side effects of it, but she's had pain, but it's under control. It's nothing like it was a couple of years ago. She's very active, she's very active.

KING: We'll be right back with Cadee Condit. I give her the best quote I can give her: Cadee Condit, daughter. Don't go away.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit. This is her first appearance. We thank her for being with us.

When the stewardess appeared, how did that make you feel?

CONDIT: Anne Marie Smith has zero to do with the Chandra Levy. Dick Robinson has zero to do with Chandra Levy.

KING: Jim Robinson. You and your brother both keep calling him Dick...


... for some reason, unless that has meaning there, if that's her lawyer, Jim Robinson. But she came forward, and it got attention. Yes, she had zero to do with Chandra Levy, but she didn't lend to the character issue. And character was one of the things the press was looking at, right?

But how did you feel when you saw her?

CONDIT: I put her and Mr. Robinson, and Vince Flammini all in the same pathetic group. Someone who's going to take advantage of a tragedy for publicity. I felt it was wrong, and she had nothing to do with the case.

KING: She said that it was her two friends that outed her to a tabloid, that only caused her to come forward, or she'd have never spoken. You didn't believe her?

CONDIT: Probably not.

KING: But you feel no bad feelings that what she said was true about the relationship?

CONDIT: Mr. King, I have no problems with my father.

KING: Yes, you made that clear.


KING: So you're not hurt when something like that...

CONDIT: No, I'm not hurt. Gary Condit has done nothing to hurt anyone.

KING: Were you angry?


KING: What -- so when you saw her what did you say to yourself?

CONDIT: What does she have to do with Chandra Levy, and finding Chandra Levy? Nothing.

KING: So then you were mad at people who put her on?

CONDIT: I wasn't mad at you for having, you know, that she was on your show. I can't believe she actually got air time. But it doesn't matter, the press because they, you know, had Anne Marie Smith on the show.

KING: And all the other stories too, they keep breaking some hinted at, some rumored, et cetera. How do you as a daughter bear-up with that?

CONDIT: What stories are you talking about?

KING: You know, there's all those stories, there's a million...

CONDIT: There's so many stories.

KING: ... stories about your father, and they all regard women. And that, that rolls off you?

CONDIT: Well, it pretty much rolls off of me, but I'm ashamed of a man or a woman that would sell stories, true or not true, to tabloids. In the time of a crisis. So more than anything, I'm ashamed that a woman would go sell a story to a tabloid.

KING: How is your father doing? We got no indication of that in the Connie Chung interview as to how he's doing?

CONDIT: He's OK. I mean he's OK. It's tough. I don't know how he's held in there for the last four months. It's been the most difficult thing in our life.

KING: Your brother said it showed on him.

CONDIT: Yeah, oh, unbelievable.

KING: Do you see a different guy?

CONDIT: Totally different guy. He's heartbroken.

KING: Lines coming where they weren't there before?

CONDIT: Uh-hum. And I'm really sad that my kids might not get to meet the Gary Condit that raised me.

KING: How do you mean?

CONDIT: You know, I don't know if we'll ever get the twinkle back.

KING: Oh, really?

CONDIT: It's just unbelievable how much this has changed him.

KING: Yeah, that's -- there was a twinkle?

CONDIT: That's right.

KING: But this is something new to us, we didn't see this. CONDIT: My dad loves life. He loves to go to my nephew, his grandkids' little league games. He loves to work out in the back yard, your regular stuff, and that's just been sucked out of him. And he can't go to little league games anymore because he'd be followed.

KING: Are you worried about him now this week in Washington?

CONDIT: Oh, yes, I pray for him every day. I am worried about him, but he'll make it through. He's tough.

KING: Did he give any thought to your knowledge of resigning?


KING: Your saying "chuck it now, hold a special election, good- bye?"


KING: You know your politics. They've divided up that district differently. Will that affect him, do you think? If he ran?

CONDIT: Probably not.

KING: They've made it more Latino, right? It's 37 percent, I think.

CONDIT: Right.

KING: And he'd still get that vote, do you think? Do you think he would win if he ran?

CONDIT: Yes, I do.

KING: Because of spunk? But if the spark is gone?

CONDIT: If the spark is gone, I don't want him to run.

KING: So if he don't feel it in the gut...

CONDIT: Right.

KING: Don't run?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: Are you surprised that other more elected officials haven't come out?

CONDIT: I'm not certain that they have or haven't.

KING: They haven't, for him.

CONDIT: No, not really.

KING: Because? The nature of politics? CONDIT: The nature of politics.

KING: So are you like mad at the Gephardts?

CONDIT: No, I just don't understand why he wants to know more about my dad's intimate life. I just, I don't understand that.

KING: Well, my guess is because they feel he's let down, or taken a lot of attention away from Congress. I mean, he's the most famous congressman in America.

CONDIT: He is the most famous congressman in America.

KING: Not the way you want to be famous.


KING: No. We'll be back with Cadee Condit on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit, the daughter of Congressman Gary Condit. And this is her first time ever appearing on television. She appears a bit nervous, who wouldn't be, first time on television. And she wants to go to TV as a career, and after seeing her a lot of people might think of bringing her back to television.

And she's open because she's -- what's your brother going to do by the way?

CONDIT: I don't know what we're going to do yet.

KING: Did you get any -- was there any pay involved? At least get some chance to tide you over?

CONDIT: A little bit.

KING: Your brother has children.

CONDIT: We did, we got a little.

KING: So you quit purely on principle?

CONDIT: Purely on principle.

KING: He said he would take you back, you wouldn't go back?


KING: Not ever?

CONDIT: Not ever. We stand by our friends through the good times and the bad times.

KING: Are you still a Democrat?

CONDIT: I am a Democrat.

KING: Your brother said in a Tuesday interview that there was a possibility that your father was framed, maybe set-up to make it look as though he was involved. What did you think of that theory? I knew he just threw it out among many. Who do you think?

CONDIT: I think anything is possible. I wouldn't rule that out. I'm not sure what happened.

KING: Well, you mean from enemies?

CONDIT: Right. I don't know what happened. It's possible.

KING: What do you think of the Levy's?

CONDIT: God, my heart and prayers go out to them. I'm so sorry for what they're going through. The toughest thing to lose, or you know, or have a missing child.

KING: And when they talk about your father in less than glowing terms, do you have mixed emotions? I mean you love your dad so much that you care about what they're going through?

KING: Do you understand it?

CONDIT: I can't, well, God, I could never understand their pain.

KING: I mean their feelings toward your dad?

CONDIT: Well, there's nothing to be suspicious of my dad, at all. And we understand that sometimes people say things to get another press story. And we're OK with that. And if the Condit name brings Chandra Levy home safely, every moment of this has been worth it.

KING: So then your feelings are so strong for them that no matter what they said as long as we find out what happened -- they said the most important thing on this show to them is to just know what happened.

CONDIT: Well, we want to know what happened.

KING: I mean even if she's dead, at least to know it. Like than to never know it.

KING: Do you hear anything about any possible leads, or anything?

CONDIT: I haven't heard anything.

KING: Nothing?

CONDIT: Nothing.

KING: The police said that your father at times hindered the investigations. One top official said "questioning Gary Condit was like pulling teeth." How do you react to that?

CONDIT: I don't believe that's true. You know, the detectives that have been on the case have been very professional, and they've done a great job. Their chief and the assistant, or deputy chief, or whatever, they've never even met my father. They didn't attend one of the interviews, yet they're the people that are holding press conference after press conference.

KING: They never met your father?

CONDIT: No. They've never met Gary Condit. Yet they can hold all of these press conferences and talk about him.

KING: Didn't know that. What did you make of the missing watch box?


KING: I mean how do you piece together that story? It is a strange story.

CONDIT: It is a strange story, and the only thing I can say with the watch box is there were French fries involved.

KING: There were?


KING: Well, I don't know anybody who drives that far to drop off French fries in a box.

CONDIT: Knowing at the same time that Mike Dayton, they had been to his house, it wasn't like they drove out of town just to throw something away. They were in that town.

KING: He was with Mike, and Mike was out with Gary. In other words, he didn't take a box from a room, and say "let's drive seven miles."

CONDIT: No, and he didn't take anything from his apartment either. This is from his office. He never took anything from his apartment.

KING: How soon after all this broke did you talk to your father? Did you talk to him right away when the girl became missing?

What was that like? Was, you know was he strained? What was that like, that first...?

CONDIT: He was worried, he was really worried about where she was.

KING: Had you ever heard of her before this?


KING: No. When he came home for the recess, what was that like as the family gathered? I know your grandfather led prayers there, right?

What was it like for you then?

CONDIT: It's a tough time for the Condit's. It's very tough. But the most important thing is we were all there. We're going to get through this together. And I thought that we were a tight family four months ago. But now, it's like this bond that just cannot be broken. We've all come together, and we're there for one another.

KING: Are you close to your uncles? Even the one that has the problems? Yes? Because he got drawn into this.

CONDIT: Bless his heart.

KING: What did you make of that? He didn't do anything wrong.

CONDIT: He didn't do anything wrong! You know. I couldn't believe that the tabloids were targeting him.

KING: I guess, did you ever think much about the tabloids before all this?

CONDIT: No, no, not at all.

KING: Did you read them?


KING: You were not a tabloid person?

CONDIT: No. The most I do is is glance at them when I was in a grocery store line.

KING: And what do you make of, I mean this week they're out with the story behind this...

CONDIT: I would hope that people don't believe them. You know, the tabloids, how they get their stories is they pay people to say things. And they're not true. And it's unfair to do to an innocent person. And I think that people get that, and I think people know that.

KING: Well, what we don't know is the real Gary Condit that you've described.

CONDIT: He's a great guy.

KING: That his staff described.

CONDIT: Unbelievable man. KING: We don't know.

CONDIT: Unfortunately.

KING: And that point, don't you think we should?

CONDIT: I think that people shouldn't believe everything they read and they see on the news.

KING: We'll be right back, with Cadee Condit. By the way, the pictures you're seeing have been provided by Cadee, and her brother, and the Condit family. This is LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit. Are you concerned, Cadee, legally? There are investigations going on as to perjury or subordination of evidence, et cetera. You worried?

CONDIT: No, my dad has not -- he's done nothing wrong.

KING: So you have total faith in that?

CONDIT: Total faith in that.

KING: You know, when you -- you've described the twinkle, you've described other things. What other things? Give me some instances of things about your father that people who go around, are saying things like "I hate him." And there are people saying that. You know that.

CONDIT: I know that.

KING: Who would be shocked to learn.

CONDIT: He's a good dad, good husband, great grandpa. I mean he's just, he's been such an important part of my life I can't believe anyone could hate my dad.

KING: When you came to Washington to live with him.

CONDIT: I did everything when I was in college.

KING: Oh, every summer you came? What was that experience like?

CONDIT: It was great, it was fun. But I see my dad a lot, regardless of where we are. He would take me to, you know, different places. We would go see plays, we would go to the movie. He'd just shoot pool with me, he'd take me, you know, we had a good summer. Every summer was good with him.

KING: Did you learn a lot about Congress? CONDIT: I did. He was, he's always taking me different places, and you know, I've always gone to work with him. When I was a little girl I got to go to work with him a lot, so.

KING: Did he ever have higher aspirations, other things, that he wanted to be senator, or governor. Or?

CONDIT: I think he could have been.

KING: Well, of course now, that's history now.

CONDIT: Right.

KING: But I mean did he ever discuss that?

CONDIT: He loves his job, he loves what he does, and if that could have grown, I think he would have grown with it.

KING: And he was very easy to reach, right?

CONDIT: Very easy to reach.

KING: How controlling was he of his daughter? A lot of fathers, you know, are like, who are you seeing tomorrow?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: Was he that way?

CONDIT: Well, I wouldn't say he was controlling at all. He was strict, but he was always fair. Always fair.

KING: As a teenager you had to be home at a certain hour?

CONDIT: He was very strict as a teenager.

KING: And did he want to know who you were seeing?

CONDIT: Always, always. Had to leave your telephone number where you were going, you had to call and check-in.

KING: If you were seeing someone even semi-seriously did he get nervous?

CONDIT: Probably a little nervous.

KING: Did he treat you differently than your brother?

CONDIT: No, I don't think differently. He raised me to be independent, and he made sure that that was one of the things that he stressed. To make sure that I became an independent woman. But Chad probably had a little more freedom than I did.

KING: Being a girl? During all of this, has he talked to you a lot?

CONDIT: Absolutely, we talk daily.

KING: Every day?

CONDIT: Every day.

KING: And the family planned, when he did that, the interview with Miss Chung, were you there?

CONDIT: I was there.

KING: What was it like to be there?

CONDIT: Well, it was horrible. It's just gut wrenching watching it. She was just brutal. It was hard.

KING: In retrospect your brother agreed with this, "30 minutes was a mistake."

CONDIT: That was a mistake, well, picking Connie Chung was a mistake.

KING: But thirty minutes was a mistake? Are you down on Mr. Lowell?

CONDIT: No, I respect him and like him very much, and he's been a good attorney.

KING: This has been a tough spot because of the attention brought upon him, and the most amazing thing is that you don't feel your father had anything to do with it, or you're blocking up against the wall here of PR that says he should have done it, PR advisers.

CONDIT: That isn't PR, this wasn't a PR battle.

KING: Everything.

CONDIT: It's out of pocket, and everything is not, a missing girl is not a PR campaign. I think Chandra Levy is the most important thing, and that is what Gary Condit tried to do. He helped the law enforcement. He got the law enforcement involved. Got the FBI involved. No, PR isn't the most important thing.

KING: You know, this is a citizen now. The puzzle of this, you ever wonder like how did this happen?

CONDIT: All the time.

KING: Would you run out of your house, leave keys, leave a pocketbook?

CONDIT: I do that all the time.

KING: You do?

CONDIT: I go out with five bucks and run to Starbucks. Or I go, just grab my keys and go to the gym, so, yeah, I do that a lot. KING: And you think that, do you put together a scenario here because some people say "well, could this just be an accident?" I mean some crazy person is driving by at that minute, that she runs down to run to...

CONDIT: I wish I could come up with a scenario. I just don't have one. I wish I did.

KING: We'll be back with more of Cadee Condit on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE, right after this.




KING: We're back with Cadee Condit, the daughter of Congressman Gary Condit. Has this been difficult for you?

CONDIT: Absolutely, yes, it's been very hard.

KING: This interview has been hard?

CONDIT: It's tough. I mean not in my wildest dreams would I have ever imagined being on Larry King defending my dad. I would have never guessed that.

KING: I mean we had to be to be in Washington the same time. You were in the business end, I was willing to do my show at night. Little do you know, life's funny little things.

CONDIT: It's a small world.

KING: Concerned about the reports that he might be removed from a committee or two, like intelligence?

CONDIT: No, I'm not concerned. My dad's lost committees before, and he's survived. When he was in the gang of five, Speaker Brown took away his committees, because Gary stood by his principles. And he's going to continue to stand by his principles. And if they take his committees away, they take his committees away.

KING: What was the gang of give? You know, we keep hearing about that. And that's a California story.

CONDIT: And it's...

KING: These were five guys?

CONDIT: Five assemblymen that stood together and won against the speaker.

KING: Even they were all Democrats, including the speaker.

CONDIT: Yes. KING: Over what issue?

CONDIT: Over a lot of issues. They...

KING: They were rebel Democrats.

CONDIT: They were rebel Democrats, and they weren't going to vote with just party lines. And so there were five guys that got together and stood against the speaker.

And they almost voted them out.

KING: Got the speaker out.

CONDIT: Almost.

KING: And they were -- who gave them the term gang of five?

CONDIT: I think it was the press.

KING: This could have been Willie, too.

CONDIT: You never know what...

KING: Does that bitterness remain between Brown and your father?

CONDIT: No, not really. I think both respect each other.

KING: Are you concerned about the district's feelings toward your father? Polls that show they're down on him, and here's a guy that everyone said was a hardworking, good congressman...

CONDIT: Right.

KING: ... even his critics said that if you needed something done, you called him, and he got it done.

CONDIT: Absolutely.

KING: So this has to indicate something. PR may not be a part of it, but it's sure working against you.

CONDIT: Right. Our constituents, actually there's been a lot of them that have been great, a lot of them that have been very good, sending letters...

KING: You hear from people? Or something like that?

CONDIT: Oh, they call, they send letters, they send flowers. People bring by dinner. They keep us in their thoughts and prayers.

But the media has shaped people's opinions, and so I'm not shocked by the polls.

KING: Do you expect your father to make some kind of public appearance, a speech, another interview -- something, as this lingers with him back in Washington?

CONDIT: I don't know.

KING: Are you going to be involved in that decision?

CONDIT: I'll be involved in whatever Gary decides to do.

KING: OK, so that -- is everything family decided in the Condits?

CONDIT: That's the way we do things.

KING: Because some people took that like, Connie Chung offered it as a criticism. She said that the whole family makes every decision.

CONDIT: Well, we don't make every decision. We have a discussion about it.

KING: But it comes down to, the buck stops with him, right?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: But it's discussed with the family.

CONDIT: It's discussed with the family, yes.

KING: And there are reports, by the way, I want to clear up, that your mother, there was a suicide attempt -- never, I...

CONDIT: Never.

KING: ... that was in one of the...

CONDIT: My mother would never hurt herself or anyone else.

KING: That is in one of the tabloids now. Does she watch all the stuff that goes on?

CONDIT: She watches a little bit here and there. But she's not obsessed. She doesn't watch the TV 24 hours a day.

KING: And how is she treated in her normal daily life? She's not at -- she's out east with Gary, right?

CONDIT: She is.

KING: She is now, at least.


KING: But a lot of times she's here, right?

CONDIT: Right.

KING: So, they go out to dinner, go -- when she's here. CONDIT: Her friends have been great. She has...

KING: No one's jumped off that ship.


KING: To your knowledge.

CONDIT: No. Not at all. Everyone has been great to my mom. And been great to my dad.

KING: Have you lost any friends?


KING: None.

CONDIT: No. All of my friends -- I have a pretty small circle of really good friends, and they've remained that way.

KING: So nobody who was once calling you has stopped calling you.

CONDIT: No, not at all. My friends have been very loving and very supportive.

KING: We saw Chad, and he handled himself very well on the show. Now, from a sister's standpoint, how has your brother held up?

CONDIT: Great.

KING: I mean, he had to quit his job. He's supporting a family.

CONDIT: Right. It's been tough, but he's doing great. I look up to him. He is very brave, and I'm really proud of him.

KING: Your grandfather's here with you today.


KING: And what about him and your grandma?

CONDIT: They've been amazing. We're lucky to have them.

KING: He's very -- they're very -- they're part of this whole structure, too, right...


KING: ... of the Condits...


KING: ... as a family, right?

CONDIT: We're a very close and tight family. KING: We'll be back with our remaining moments with Cadee Condit, the daughter of Congress, of Congressman Gary Condit.

The number again, for information, if you have any information about the disappearance of Chandra Levy, is 800-860-6552. That's 800- 860-6552.

Don't go away.




KING: We're back with our remaining moments on LARRY KING LIVE. Our edition features tonight Cadee Condit, and we hope you have found this informative. She's a very interesting young lady who certainly stands up for her father.

What did your father do every day during the recess -- during the summer recess, over the Labor Day, you know, like, what do you do all day long when you're a Congressman with a month off?

CONDIT: Well, he's met with some constituents. He spent a lot of time with his family and his grandkids.

KING: Did he go to office every day?

CONDIT: Not every day.

KING: They man that office, right?

CONDIT: So, I mean, it's covered outside. He can't go anywhere without being covered with press.

KING: He flew back commercially to Washington?


KING: No, he had to fly private?

CONDIT: No, he didn't fly private. No, I'm not going to tell you how he got there.

KING: He drove?

CONDIT: I'm not going to confirm or deny anything.

KING: He took a train?

CONDIT: I'm not going to confirm or deny anything.

KING: OK, but he didn't commercially and he didn't fly private?

CONDIT: Right. KING: (WHISTLE). OK. Somebody in the audience can figure this out, we're going to give a prize away. No. A bus -- a bus?!

CONDIT: I'm not confirming or denying anything.

KING: OK. How's the staff doing? They were here last week. This has been very hard on them. In fact, the one who's been with him the longest thinks he shouldn't run again.

CONDIT: Right. Staff has been great. They're a strong group of people, and they've been through a lot. They've been through a lot. It's been stressful, it's been hard, but they're staying together. And I'm really proud of them. They were great the other night.

KING: Might you still want to enter the media yourself?

CONDIT: Probably not.

KING: Because of your feelings about it? Or because you just think you want to go -- what area would you think you want to go, Cadee?

CONDIT: I can tell you why I don't want to go into media. They have hounded our family. They are staked out in our front yard, our back yard.

KING: That's not all of them, though. That's some...

CONDIT: No, I mean, it's not all of them, but I just couldn't do that. And I couldn't ruin someone's career and someone's life because he didn't talk. I couldn't do that. I don't want to be a part of that.

KING: All right. So what do you think you want to do?

CONDIT: I don't know.

KING: You got a college degree?


KING: From...

CONDIT: I went to Sacramento State.

KING: All right. And the degree is in what?

CONDIT: Communications.

KING: Oh! I hate to mention this, but, did you want to do PR?

CONDIT: Maybe.

KING: Because you don't seem flipped about PR, either. I mean, but you like people. You like...

CONDIT: I like...

KING: ... getting out and meeting people. And you're available, now, right? You want to work.

CONDIT: I am unemployed, yes.

KING: Do you regard the name, in any way, going to hurt you?

CONDIT: No. I'm proud of my last name. My dad's worked very hard, so, I'll keep it.

KING: So there's no into hiding.

CONDIT: No. I'm not into hiding.

KING: And what about the brother? What is Chad going to do?

CONDIT: We haven't made any decisions. We just left our jobs a couple of days ago, so...

KING: He ran the whole region...

CONDIT: ... we're going to take some time.

KING: ... for your father, right? I mean, he had a key job for the governor, right?

CONDIT: He was very...

KING: There were rumors, even though he said he hated it, that he would run for your father's seat.

CONDIT: No, I don't think so. I think that...

KING: What if your father said, go ahead, Chad. I'm going to quit. Make the run.

CONDIT: I don't know. You'll have to ask Chad. But I would doubt that he would run.

KING: Because of his soured feelings toward politics. Do you plan to visit your father in Washington?


KING: You miss Washington?

CONDIT: I do. I really enjoyed Washington.

KING: Did you enjoy CNN?

CONDIT: I did. It was a great experience.

KING: The media will be following him everywhere he goes in Washington.

CONDIT: Yes, I'm sure they will.

KING: And you're going to be with him when you go there? What is it like, by the way? I guess none of us has ever experienced this, to walk out of a building and...

CONDIT: It's scary. They just put the camera in your face, and it's just the most uncomfortable feeling.

KING: You've got to live with it, though.

CONDIT: You have to live it.

KING: Go -- as they say, it goes -- it's not a territory you planned, ...


KING: ... but it goes with the territory. Summing up, though, despite all of this, and everything that's happened, you don't one inch blame your father.

CONDIT: Not at all.

KING: The number, again, is 800-860-6552, if you have any information about the missing Chandra Levy -- 800-860-6552.

Would you like to meet the Levys?

CONDIT: I would.

KING: I think they would like you.

CONDIT: Well thank you. I think I ...

KING: It's just ...

CONDIT: ... would like them.

KING: Thank you very much.

CONDIT: Thank you, Mr. King.

KING: Mr. King? Couldn't say Larry once. OK.

Cadee Condit, our special guest. We thank you very much for joining us on this edition of Larry King Live, and we thank her for making this exclusive appearance.

We'll see you tomorrow night. Stay tuned for "CNN TONIGHT." That's next. Good night.