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WASHINGTON (AP) – Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, trying to quell questions about her presidential ambitions, ended up fueling them instead Thursday in front of a roomful of reporters.

At a speech before the National Press Club in Washington, the New York Democrat was asked whether she might run for president or vice president in the future.

“I have said that I am not running,” Clinton said.

“I’m having a great time being pres…” she began.

She quickly corrected herself and continued “being a senator from New York.”

As the audience erupted in laughter Clinton added, “You’re going to get me in an awful lot of trouble.”

Clinton has ruled out running in 2004, saying she would serve out her six year Senate term. But questions remain over whether she has slammed the door on running entirely.

The former first lady’s name is often mentioned as a possible Democratic contender for president, although that speculation cooled earlier this year over questions regarding several of her husband’s last-minute pardons and gifts the Clintons took with them from the White House.

An April poll from the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion found that 55 percent of New Yorkers believe Clinton should not run for president and 39 percent thought she should.

Clinton’s speech at the press club Thursday focused on health hazards hidden in the environment.

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