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NYPD's Kelly dodges questions about future

Former NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly addresses a news

Former NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly addresses a news conference on April 26, 2013. Credit: Craig Ruttle

NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly on Friday stayed away from questions about his future and the rampant speculation that he was a candidate to succeed Janet Napolitano as head of the Department of Homeland Security.

Kelly's name surfaced in recent weeks in the hunt to fill the post held by Napolitano, who is leaving office soon to head the University of California system. President Barack Obama has said Kelly was well qualified for the job.

"I am flattered by what the president said but I am not going to comment further on it," Kelly said Friday.

Kelly also didn't give a strong indication that he would stay for the remaining five months of the Bloomberg administration. "I am going to take each day as it comes," Kelly said of his immediate plans.

Speculation about Kelly's future has intensified in recent weeks with the announcement that his longtime close aide and media spokesman Paul Browne was leaving next month to take a key post at Notre Dame University.

Though some Washington political sources have said that Kelly is interested in the DHS post, they note that he could draw fire from critics during the nomination process because of the NYPD's controversial stop-and frisk tactics and surveillance of Muslims.

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