Rep. King won't challenge Sen. Gillibrand in 2010

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NEW YORK - NEW YORK (AP) — Republican New York Rep. Peter King announced Monday that he will not challenge Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand in 2010, saying he wouldn't be able to raise enough money to challenge the Democrat.

King and former Gov. George Pataki had been considered possible contenders for Gillibrand's seat, but no Republican had declared candidacy.

Instead, King said, he'll seek re-election to his 10th term in the House. The Long Island congressman said Gillibrand "generates neither strong support nor opposition," making it "virtually impossible" to raise the funds required to overcome her edge in registered voters.

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Gillibrand, a little-known congresswoman from upstate New York, was appointed by Gov. David Paterson to fill the vacancy created by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's appointment as secretary of state. She was appointed after Caroline Kennedy abruptly withdrew from consideration.

King said if Caroline Kennedy had been his opposition, it would have been far easier to contrast his "blue-collar conservatism with her Manhattan liberalism."

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