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May 1, 2008

CONGRESS: Lee kicks off campaign for 26th District

Christopher J. Lee kicked off his Republican campaign for Congress pledging he’d work to get tax-and-spend government out of Western New York’s way.

Lee, a business executive from Clarence, introduced himself briefly in five stops around the U.S. House 26th district, including a late afternoon visit to Main Street, Lockport, where he was flanked by family and a contingent of GOP figures from the city, town and county.

Lee, 44, said he’s aiming to replace retiring incumbent Rep. Thomas M. Reynolds, R-Clarence, so he can give the Capitol the perspective of a small businessman from a region stunted by high taxes, hyper-regulation and the flight of native talent.

“For too long, we have heard about creating jobs, lowering taxes and eliminating needless regulation. Unfortunately, the results have not matched the rhetoric,” Lee said. “Western New Yorkers are demanding real reform, real change, real leadership and real solutions.”

Lee spent 20 years in management of information technology and high-tech companies, including Orchard Park-based International Motion Control, his family’s business until it was sold to ITT Corp. last year.

Among Western New York’s needs is a bigger supply of modern jobs. To get them, Lee said, taxes and red tape have to be reduced.

High tech as a career was attainable for Lee 20 years ago only because he left the area and went west, to California, he said. He returned home in the late 1990s, when the Lee family’s high-tech engineering and manufacturing company started to surge, and knew it was a rare opportunity.

“All of this government red tape has led to a brain drain of our youth, businesses leaving and a decline in our area,” Lee said. “We must fight for the jobs of today and the future because that’s how we will turn around Western New York.”

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