01/03/2006 at 08:00 AM EST
Reminiscent of Bob Hope's old joke that he couldn't run for president because his wife wouldn't want to live in a smaller house, Donald Trump has put to rest reports that he was considering a run on New York's Governor's Mansion as a possible Republican candidate to replace incumbent George Pataki.
"I have no interest in running for public office at this time," Trump, 59, told New York's Daily News. He added to the New York Post: "I'm the largest builder in New York, I'm building things all over the country, I have one of the top shows on television. It's a little hard to leave all of that."
State Republican boss Steve Minarik was not surprised by Trump's declarations, given that the Apprentice host's rumored gubernatorial aspirations seemed to have played only in the newspapers in Manhattan and not in the corridors of power in Albany.
"For a guy as powerful and wealthy as Donald Trump, if he had any interest he would have reached out to us by now," Minarik told the Daily News.
Trump, who had played with the idea of running for the White House as an independent in 2000, stressed that his plan not to campaign for the governor's job this year "doesn't preclude me from doing something (political) in the future."