President Barack Obama issued a statement Friday on the passing of Ed Koch, calling him an extraordinary mayor, irrepressible character and quintessential New Yorker.
"He took office at a time when New York was in fiscal crisis, and helped his city achieve economic renewal, expand affordable housing, and extend opportunity to more of its people.
"In public office and beyond, his energy, force of personality, and commitment to causes ranging from civic issues to the security of the state of Israel always informed and enlivened the public discourse. Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to Ed’s loved ones, and to the city that survives him," Obama wrote in the statement.
Koch was 88 years old and died of congestive heart failure.
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