Former Rep. Randy Kuhl (R-N.Y.), who contemplated seeking his old seat after the political implosion of the man who defeated him in 2008, Democrat Eric Massa, announced Wednesday that he would not run.
Kuhl urged voters of the 29th district to support former Corning Mayor Tom Reed (R), who entered the race several months ago to take on Massa.
“Over the last week, I have heard from hundreds of my former constituents urging me to run for my old Congressional seat,” Kuhl said in a statement. “Their emotional plea to me was humbling and most appreciative. But after careful consideration, I have decided to forego a run for Congress. I want to sincerely thank everyone who has supported me during my 28 years of public service. I look forward to helping the 29th district in any way that I can and I urge my neighbors and friends to support Tom Reed for this Congressional seat.”
Massa announced a week ago that he wouldn’t seek a second term because of a recurrence of cancer. But in subsequent days a series of bizarre revelations emerged, including the news that he was being investigated by the House ethics committee. Massa resigned his seat Monday, necessitating a special election to replace him.
Reed already had the support of national and local Republican leaders, but with Massa’s resignation, there remains the possibility that another Republican will seek the seat. Democrats are scrambling to find a candidate of their own for what is expected to be a very competitive special election.