ALBANY — After running for the state Senate in 2016, Leslie Danks Burke is taking another shot at defeating Republican incumbent Sen. Tom O'Mara in a district that stretches across the Southern Tier and central New York.


Danks Burke, a Democrat and an Ithaca attorney, has stayed politically active after running a spirited race against O'Mara four years ago, but losing by 10 percentage points.


Now she will look to try to defeat him as Democrats seek to strengthen their control of the Senate, where they hold 40 of the 63 seats after taking the majority in 2018.


“I’ve stood up for years to the powerful interests that work against success for families in our beautiful Southern Tier and Finger Lakes," she said in a statement to the USA TODAY Network New York.


"I’m running for State Senate to give our region the voice we don’t have in Albany now."


O'Mara, of Big Flats, Chemung County, is an attorney and has been in the Legislature for nearly 15 years, first as an assemblyman and since 2011 as a senator.


While eight of his Republican colleagues have announced in recent months they will not seek re-election in 2020, O'Mara's office said he plans to run again.


The 58th district cover Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben and Yates counties, as well as the majority of Tompkins.


Danks Burke grew up in Colorado and came to the Southern Tier in 2004, when her husband Cody began attending graduate school at Cornell University.


They have stayed in the region ever since, and after her loss to O'Mara, she started the Trailblazers PAC, which aims to fund candidates who want to reform local government.


Danks Burke created a formidable fundraising operation in 2016, outraising O'Mara by $200,000 — even though O'Mara then served in the Senate majority, which had more money than now to fund candidates.


The district, however, has about 8,000 more Republicans than Democrats.


Danks Burke contended O'Mara hasn't done enough to help the region, which has suffered with a stagnant economy.


"A lot has changed since 2016, but my opponent hasn’t, and life for many in the 58th district hasn’t gotten better," she charged.


There was no immediate comment from O'Mara on her entry into the race or her comments about his record.


O'Mara successfully fought a ban on lawmakers being limited in how much outside income they can make. He earns as much as $150,000 a year in salary from the private law firm, Barclay Damon LLP.


O'Mara has contended legislators are technically considered part-time according to the state Constitution and should be able to have a private salary.


State lawmakers earn $110,000 a year.


During his tenure, O'Mara once headed the powerful Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, and he has advocated for lower taxes and more funding for infrastructure.


On his website, O'Mara's biography says he has focused on the belief that "government does not create jobs, business does."


"That's why he’s focused on developing public policies and strategies that allow state government to improve the economic climate for doing business in New York by opposing tax increases, reducing state spending, and cutting overregulation and oppressive property taxes," it said.