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Assemb. Phil Ramos (D-Brentwood) says he is "seriously considering" a bid to challenge Republican Rep. Peter King next year, creating a potential rivalry with Suffolk Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory, who's already seeking the nomination.
Ramos said "the next month will be critical" in deciding. "I have already been in serious dialogue with the DCCC," he said, referring to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Ramos, the Assembly's deputy majority leader, said he believes he has a "well-rounded resume" to run in the 2nd Congressional District, which is now largely in Suffolk.
Ramos said his decision will not depend on whether King runs for re-election. "I have a large footprint in the community where I have been active for years in uniting the black, Hispanic and Asian communities," he said. "I'm focusing on my winnability and getting the resources and organization to be able to run for Congress."
To run, Ramos must forgo re-election to the Assembly next year. Gregory (D-Amityville) faces legislative re-election this fall and has started fundraising for a congressional race, looking to raise $10,000 by month"s end. "This is a democracy. I welcome anyone into the race who might want to run, but I'm focusing on my own campaign," he said.