Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton said Monday she won't make a decision about running for president until after the first of the year.

During a visit to an aircraft maintenance facility at the former Griffiss Air Base, Clinton confirmed she is talking to people in New York and across the country about a possible run for president in 2008. It was the first time Clinton publicly confirmed what her aides and fellow Democrats have been saying about a possible presidential run.

"I'm talking to people who have opinions about what our country needs to do going forward and whether or not I make any decisions, I can't really confront until after the first of the year," Clinton said.

The former first lady said she had not yet decided whether to form a presidential exploratory committee, but that technical requirements of federal election law might require her to do so if she continues to consider a presidential run.

"I'm certainly interested in what happens to our country," she said when asked if she was interested in being president. "I'm looking at where our country is, where I would like to see it go, listening to people who think I might make a contribution to that."

Asked if she would make a good president, Clinton said, "obviously if I make a decision to pursue it, that would be one of the conclusions I reach."

Clinton was in Rome for the announcement that the airline JetBlue will begin sending 20 percent of its planes to a maintenance facility located on the former air base.