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New York Assembly minority leader Kolb pulls out of governor’s race

CANANDAIGUA, N.Y. — New York State Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb (R–Canandaigua) today announced he is withdrawing from the race for New York governor, less than two months after throwing his hat in the ring.

On Dec. 12, Kolb became the first Republican candidate to formally announce a bid to win the party’s nomination to challenge Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) as he seeks a third term in 2018.

Since then, State Senator John DeFrancisco, (R-Syracuse), the No. 2 in the Republican-led New York Senate, and former Erie County Executive Joel Giambra jumped into the race.

Kolb explained his decision in the following statement Friday afternoon:

“It is with a heavy heart that today I am announcing I am ending my campaign for Governor of New York.

As I left my home before dawn this morning, saying goodbye to my incredible wife, I knew that I’d be spending the next week, the week after, and every week for at least the next nine months on the road, away from my loving family. That moment helped put what is truly important in life back into perspective.

The last few months have been an incredible journey, and I am very grateful to so many friends, volunteers, activists, business and community leaders, and donors for their support. It has been humbling to have the support of so many Republican County Chairs and State Committee people from all across our state.

I will continue to serve the people of New York as Assembly Leader and look forward to continuing to fight for lower taxes, good jobs for New York families, and an end to the corruption in the Cuomo administration.”

Kolb, 65, is a former small-business owner who has served as Assembly minority leader since 2009 and been a member of the Assembly since winning election in 2000. He represents the 131st Assembly District, which encompasses all of Ontario County and parts of Seneca County.

When he announced for governor, Kolb said he was running on a platform to lower taxes, create jobs, and end corruption.

Contact Rombel at

 Photo credit: Brian Kolb for New York Facebook page


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