State Senator James Seward says he will not be entering the race for the 19th Congressional District seat in 2016.

Seward's name has come up as a possible candidate after Congressman Chris Gibson announced he would not be seeking re-election next year.

Seward issued the following statement:

While serving in Washington D.C. would allow me to address a number of important issues facing our region, I feel that at this time my standing as a senior member of the New York State senate majority enables me to better serve my district.

Therefore, I intend to continue to use my seniority, leadership position, and experience in the state senate to focus on the needs and concerns of the people of my district and will not be a candidate for congress in 2016. This is how I can be of optimal service to our area.

I fully expect that the 19th district congressional seat will remain in Republican hands because the potential candidates contemplating a run believe in the same core values that so many of us share – lower taxes, less government, and new economic opportunities.

I look forward to working with our next congressman and continuing to team with Chris Gibson as he embarks on a new path that will help New York prosper.”