Collins Running for Congress

March 26, 2012 Updated Mar 26, 2012 at 8:52 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

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March 26, 2012 Updated Mar 26, 2012 at 8:52 PM EDT


Buffalo, NY (WKBW) -Former Erie County Executive Chris Collins is throwing his hat back in the political realm and announced Sunday his plans to run for Congress to represent the 27th District. In November, Collins said he was 'done with politics' after loosing his re-election as Erie County Executive to Mark Poloncarz, but says he's had a change of heart.

"It really hit me," said Collins Monday. "I'm not ready to walk away. I know how to create jobs. I know what works. I know government policies that get in the way of job creation."

Collins will challenge War Veteran David Bellavia for the Republican ticket in the completely re-drawn 27th Congressional District. In a predominately Republican district, Collins and Bellavia are hopefull to reclaim the district back from Democratic Congresswoman Kathy Hochul, who won in a special election last May.

"When I talk to residents I can talk kitchen table politics," said Bellavia. "I hurt when I put 4 dollars and 2 cents in my car. I know what a mortgage and a car payment feel like and every month is a challenge."

A primary is set for June 26th. A spokesperson for Hochul said the congresswoman is looking forward to a constructive dialogue with Collins, and Bellavia on the best way to cut spending in Washington.