BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — David Bellavia, the Medal of Honor recipient who was on the fence about running for New York’s open 27th Congressional District seat, has chosen to stay out, as confirmed Sunday afternoon by News 4’s Dave Greber after speaking with Republican leaders.
Bellavia subsequently issued a statement:
I am formally announcing I will not run for Congress in the 27th District of New York in the upcoming Special Election. My service to our great community and country is unwavering, but I have a new responsibility to the U.S. Army. The Medal of Honor recognition is providing me with an incredible opportunity to serve at a level not thought possible just a few months ago. I am traveling the country, as an ambassador for Western New York, educating and influencing future soldiers and fellow citizens, as well as training and advising military leadership.
Acting upon my long-standing and sincere desire to run for Congress at this time would require me to set aside pre-existing commitments I have made to my Army, my family, and those with whom I do business. I have carefully considered the needs and advice of party leadership and those closest to me and I am extremely thankful and forever humbled by the overwhelming support from Western New York.
Go Bills! Go Sabres!”Statement from David Bellavia
Bellavia was awarded for his heroism during the Iraq War and long considered a career in politics.
There remain four declared candidates in that race: Republicans Chris Jacobs, Rob Ortt and Beth Parlato, and Democrat Nate McMurray.
The seat is currently open after Chris Collins resigned before his guilty plea in an insider trading case.
A special election would have to be called by the governor. That has been remarked upon by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but not yet been announced.