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GOP courts New York Medal of Honor recipient for Congress

Politics

President Donald Trump awards Army Staff Sgt. David Bellavia the Medal of Honor at the White House in Washington, Tuesday, June 25, 2019. Bellavia is a Iraq veteran who cleared an insurgent strongpoint and allowed members of his platoon to move to safety. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — A group of western New York Republicans is courting Medal of Honor recipient David Bellavia to run for Congress.

The Iraq War veteran ran in 2012 and lost to Rep. Chris Collins in the Republican primary. Now, Collins is facing trial on charges of money laundering and hasn’t said yet whether he’ll seek re-election next year. He’s pleaded not guilty.

Bellavia supporters launched www.draftbellavia.com on Tuesday. Led by political consultant Michael Caputo, organizers say the campaign-style website is meant to show Bellavia the level of support for a possible candidacy.

Bellavia, who received the Medal of Honor from President Donald Trump last month, hasn’t ruled out a run. But he’s said he is not interested in using the award to bolster his chances of getting elected.

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