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Pataki won't run again for New York governor

Associated Press
Published July 28, 2005

ALBANY, N.Y. - Republican George Pataki, who brought down Democratic icon Mario Cuomo in 1994 to become governor of New York, said Wednesday he will not seek a fourth term next year and "come 2007, I will follow a new path, find new challenges."

While Pataki is considering a run for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, he told the Associated Press "that's for down the road. I'm not ruling anything in or out."

Later, the nation's longest currently serving governor told cheering supporters and state employees at the Capitol that he will call it quits after three terms.

Pataki said he was pleased with the state of the state.

"We've done a lot together, and yet there is always more to do," he said.

Recent polls in New York showed Pataki trailing state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, a Democrat, in a possible 2006 gubernatorial matchup.

Some Democrats claimed Pataki was getting out while he could, and some Republicans shared that feeling.

"We should all be clear about this - if he thought he could be re-elected, he'd run again," said Howard Wolfson, a strategist for the state Democratic Party.

"George Pataki both defeated Mario Cuomo and learned from Mario Cuomo," said Republican strategist Nelson Warfield. "Cuomo left office seeking a fourth term and went out a loser. Now George Pataki will retire from state politics undefeated."

Aides to Rudolph Giuliani have said the former New York mayor is too busy with private business interests to run for governor. Current Mayor Michael Bloomberg said earlier this week he has no interest.

[Last modified July 28, 2005, 01:10:15]

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