Politicians and pundits react to Ed Koch’s death

The internet offered fond - and not so fond - memories of the former New York City mayor VIDEO

Topics: Video, Ed Koch, New York City, Andrew Cuomo, Michael Bloomberg,

Politicians and pundits react to Ed Koch's deathEd Koch (Credit: AP/David Bookstaver)

Early Friday morning, former New York City Mayor Ed Koch died of congestive heart failure at age 88. Koch served as mayor for 12 years, but even after his tenure, remained in the spotlight as a radio host, commercial star, movie reviewer, and general political gadfly. “I’m the sort of person who will never get ulcers,” he said in 1978. “Why? Because I say exactly what I think. I’m the sort of person who might give other people ulcers.”

Koch plans to be buried in Manhattan, and told the Associated Press in 2008 that his headstone will be engraved with the Star of David, a Hebrew prayer, and the last words of  journalist Daniel Pearl, who was killed by terrorists in 2002: “My father is Jewish. My mother is Jewish. I am Jewish.”

New York public officials responded to news of Koch’s death:

“The passing of Mayor Ed Koch will leave a hole in the hearts of New Yorkers, he was a true gentleman with a jovial sense of humor who served New York well,” said Mike Long, the chairman of the State Conservative Party.

Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos said: “With the passing of Ed Koch, New York has lost one of its true larger-than-life political leaders. He had a passion for public service, and an outsized personality to match.”

Other officials responded on Twitter:



Twitter pundits offered up favorite quotes or moments with the former Mayor:

There were also those who do not remember him so fondly:

In its obituary for Koch, the New York Times wrote that he “parlayed shrewd political instincts and plenty of chutzpah into three tumultuous terms as mayor of New York with all the tenacity, zest and combativeness that personified his city of golden dreams.” The Times also posted this “Last Word” video obituary with Koch, in which he asks, “Do you miss me?”

Koch’s death comes on the same day as the release of “Koch,” a documentary about his life, by Neil Barsky. Here’s the trailer:

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at jrayfield@salon.com.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    "Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)

    "Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)

    The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>