Former Rep. Rick Lazio on Monday endorsed Republican candidate for governor Rob Astorino in a fundraising email.

In the email, Lazio writes that Astorino is the “clear choice” for governor and notes he has won twice in Democratic-heavy Westchester and includes a link to the candidate’s first TV ad.

Lazio ran for governor in 2010, losing the Republican nomination to Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino.

Astorino, of course, has the luxury of not facing a party primary this time around, but still faces a steep fundraising hill to climb. Gov. Andrew Cuomo in January reported $33 million in cash on hand.

From the email:

Rob is the clear choice to lead us back on the right path. He has already successfully done so for his home county of Westchester, where he is currently serving his second term as County Executive. In a county where Democrats out-register Republicans by 2:1, Rob Astorino has twice been elected as a Republican, each time by more than 13 points. What is the secret to his success? Courage to make the tough decisions necessary to be an effective leader.

I am proud to support Rob in his effort to be our next governor and I hope you will join me. Rob’s first financial filing deadline is July 11th and he could use our help. Every $3, $10, $25 and $100 the campaign receives will enable Rob to effectively communicate his message across our great state.