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Ed Koch, former New York mayor with ‘chutzpah,’ dies

Posted Feb 1, 2013 7:31 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Former New York Mayor Ed Koch, a partner with Bryan Cave, died today at the age of 88.

The cause was congestive heart failure, report Bloomberg News and the New York Times.

The Times describes Koch as “the master showman of City Hall, who parlayed shrewd political instincts and plenty of chutzpah into three tumultuous terms as mayor of New York.”

After leaving the mayor’s office, Koch practiced law, hosted a radio talk show and acted as a television judge. While in office, he presided over a turnaround in city finances, turning a $1 billion deficit into a $500 million surplus.

Koch opened a small law practice after graduating from the New York University School of Law in 1948. According to Fox News, he worked his way through law school by checking hats, working at a deli and selling shoes.

He served on the city council and in Congress before becoming mayor in 1978.

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