Playing Catch As Koch Can

Brushed by scandal, New York's mayor says he is "mortified"

Since he was first elected mayor of New York City in 1977, Edward I. Koch has emerged as a supremely confident entertainer who has fine-tuned his media image into one of the country's most powerful political weapons. Wisecracking, noisy and energetic, Koch has not merely run the city but has also written two memoirs about its often byzantine politics, with himself as the hero. Cramming his days with television appointments and public ceremonies, the three-term mayor had a standard greeting: "How'm I doin'?" Until recently the answer was usually "Not bad, Ed."

But now the critics are raising their voices. Among...

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