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Regis Philbin: I Made My Decision 'A Long Time Ago'

1/24/2011 6:40 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Regis Philbin claims he was ready to bail on "Live" way before contract negotiations went sour -- insisting 28 years in the same place is long enough ... period.

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The Reegemeister quit L.A. earlier today -- hopping a flight to Miami -- and he ain't lookin' back ... at least when it comes to his famous TV show ... claiming, "I left. I'm done."

Reeg also explained, "We never reached an agreement on the contract ... but I made up my mind a long time ago."

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