Transcript for Former Senator Al D'Amato Kicked Off Flight After Protest
that confrontation on jetblue. Former senator Al d'amato kicked off a flight for protesting a lengthy delay. We'll hear from him after gio Benitez brings us the details. Reporter: Imagine the frustration you feel after being delayed and delayed again at an airport. That's what happened to the former senator and when he spoke up, he was kicked off. This morning, video of a former senator trying to lead a rebellion on a plane. Stand up for what's right and walk out with me. Reporter: Frustrated after a seven-hour delay. We can still speak in this country. Reporter: Alfonse d'amato, a U.S. Senator from New York for 18 years forced off a plane by authorities avielling at the the captain and trying to stage a walkout. Here's what happened. The captain asked nine people to move from the front of the plane to the back saying the plane was too front loaded to take off. A few minutes later the pilot announced again from the cockpit that he needed four more people to move. And if they didn't he would personally come out and receipt the passengers in the back himself. But the pilot never shows. The plane continues to sit on the tarmac as the delay moves into that seventh hour. So Al decides enough is enough. Stand up for what's right and walk out with me. Reporter: At least one passenger agrees to join him. Here's a gentleman who is doing it. Stand up and walk out. Reporter: But he doesn't top there. He marches to the cockpit and yells that the pilot is a poor excuse for a leader. Within moments authorities removed d'amato from the plane. His fellow passengers are not happy. Boo. That's not right. Reporter: Jetblue saying in a statement, that if a customer is causing a conflict on the aircraft it is standard procedure to ask the customer to deplane. Especially if the crew feels the situation runs a risk of escalation in flight. But a spokesman for d'amato says jetblue has apologized to the 79-year-old. He was in Florida to visit an ailing friend. D'amato also apologized for speaking his mind. Well, let's talk to him right now. Senator Al d'amato joins us by phone. Former senator, I know you're multitasking driving your kids to school at the same time but what happened? Well, let me say this to you, the captain totally overreacted. I said to him, you said you were going to do something. Why don't you do it? And that's when he said, you're out of here so I went back to my seat, sat down until they came in to take me off and that's when I said what I did. So I did not confront him. It was a total overreaction. Anything you would have done differently. Probably on both parts pardon me? Anything you would have done differently? Well, what would I have done differently? You know, what can you do? You're seven hours late. He's talking about asking the passengers to move about 45 minutes go by. Still hasn't done it. Still requesting. And, by the way there were other people who when I finally said, well, they took me off, I said let's stand up, about four or five other people did, but then they quickly said, oh, this plane is taking off, please sit down and, of course, you're waiting seven hour, people want to go home and they don't want to -- they should be tolerant of people, people not like cattle but human beings and customers and it's unfortunate. I think it was an overreaction on their part when I said to -- I chastised the captain by saying what are you doing. You announced that you were going to move these people and you haven't done it and so one thing led to another. I think people are tense. They're all -- they overreacted certainly and I spoke my mind after they overreacted. And you accept jetblue's apology? Pardon me? You accept jetblue's apology? Yeah, sure. Look, I think everybody was rather anxious. They overreacted. I accept their apology. They did some other things I won't talk about, but that were not quite right and, you know, it's unfortunate, a seven-hour delay and I have to tell you they did not handle the situation correctly. Get your kids to school safe. Thanks for joining us this morning, senator. Thank you.
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