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What if Congress held a hearing and nobody came? The American Association of Retired Persons was a no-show when Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wy.) opened hearings today to question the tax-exempt status of thecountry's most powerful seniors organization. "We are here not only because AARP has drifted from its stated mission of representing senior citizens," Simpson told the Senate Finance subcommittee he chairs, "but also because I believe the evidence is clear that AARP has also drifted considerably from any reasonable description of a non-profit organization." Perhaps as testimony to the financial muscle of AARP, no other Republican members of the panel showed up. Just two Democrats -- Sens. David Pryor of Arkansas and John Breaux of Louisiana -- stood by Simpson. At the end of the day, AARP released a statement accusing Simpson of trying to divert attention from its efforts to protect Medicare and Social Security.