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Radio commentator David Bellavia out of race to succeed Collins

Conservative radio commentator David Bellavia is no longer interested in replacing Rep. Chris Collins in the race for the 27th Congressional District.

Bellavia, a decorated Iraq War veteran who unsuccessfully challenged Collins in the 2012 Republican primary, issued a statement Tuesday morning thanking his supporters but saying now was not the right time for him to seek the nomination.

"Today, in search of party unity, I request my name be taken out of consideration for NY27," Bellavia said in a statement provided to The Buffalo News.

Bellavia serves as a co-host on a NewsRadio930 WBEN talk show. His statement touted his deep ties to the district, which stretches from suburban Erie County to the Rochester area, and said "the good people of NY27 deserve a congressman who puts the needs of the district first."

He also noted the possibility that the Republican chairs in the counties that make up the district could select a candidate only to see the decision overruled in court.

"I believe each candidate deserves a final, transparent and ethical path for placement on the November ballot," he said.

Bellavia's departure leaves 10 candidates who are expected to meet with the county chairs starting at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Batavia Downs.

11 to make their case for Collins' seat in marathon GOP meeting

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