NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has shot down speculation he might succeed Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, saying he would leave office early only if he were incapacitated or died.
The mayor faced questions about his political future after a gossip item in the New York Post suggested he and President Barack Obama discussed the possibility during a golf game last weekend.
During an appearance at a school in the city's Bronx borough, Bloomberg was asked whether he could foresee any circumstances under which he would leave city hall before his term ends in 2013, he said: "If I died."
"I suppose total incapacitation would also," he added. "Short of that, I can't think of any."
Geithner has come under criticism for his handling of the economy as it struggles to emerge from recession.
A former partner at Salomon Brothers, the mayor founded Bloomberg LP, a news and financial information company that competes with Thomson Reuters. He has been mentioned as a potential candidate for the White House and other political positions.
The mayor, who is 68, made his comments after announcing funding for new city schools.
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