September 11th: Ten Years, with Jeffrey Toobin

September 7th, 2011

The New Yorker
Sept 6, 2011

For the tenth anniversary of the September 11th attacks, we asked New Yorker contributors to look back on how their work, and their lives, were changed. Here are Jeffrey Toobin’s answers.

1. What were you thinking about, or working on, the day the attacks occurred?

I woke up very early and made it to the polls to vote in the mayoral primary and then headed to Penn Station to get on a train to Philadelphia. I was doing a piece about the Barnes Foundation, which is an odd and wonderful art collection that has been the subject of many legal disputes over the years.

When I arrived at the Barnes, someone had wheeled a television into the conference room. The first plane had hit. I remember talking about how a plane had once hit the Empire State Building.

After the second plane hit, everything changed. It became clear that this was a terrorist attack. They evacuated the museum. I went to the ABC affiliate in downtown Philadelphia. I was the ABC News legal analyst at the time, and I wanted to contribute to the coverage. I reached my wife and learned that she and our kids were fine.