FORMER U.S. Rep. Marjorie Margolies is running for her old seat, which straddles Philadelphia and Montgomery counties. As a freshman Democrat in 1993, Margolies famously cast the deciding vote for President Bill Clinton's budget and likely lost re-election because of it. Years later, her son Marc Mezvinsky married Chelsea Clinton.

She's up against state Sen. Daylin Leach, state Rep. Brendan Boyle and physician Valerie Arkoosh in the Democratic primary for the 13th District, which was a Montgomery County seat her first time around but is now about half Northeast Philly. (A longtime Jomar shopper, Margolies says she's no stranger to the Boulevard.)

Daily News reporter Sean Collins Walsh recently sat down with Margolies at the Ritz-Carlton to talk about the race. And, yes, of course he also asked her to dish on the in-laws.

Q Where are you living these days?

I stayed in my district, and it moved. I'm living in Wynnewood, but I'm going to be moving into the district.

Q How has returning to politics been? Is it like riding a bike?

It is actually. Politics is so based on relationships, so that's the same. The district is very different. I only had Montgomery County last time, and now it's almost half Philadelphia. It had always been a Republican district. But now it's a Democratic district.

Q What's your favorite Philadelphia neighborhood?

In the Northeast, in that area - I've always gone shopping there - I was delighted to find out that that was in my district, out the Roosevelt Boulevard. So I would say I like the area in my district. I like it a lot.

Q That's a good answer.

It's a very good answer, don't you think? It's the right answer, don't you think? I'm not kidding. I could give you the names. I've been going to Jomar for years.

Q You obviously have an interesting history with the Clintons dating back to the budget vote.

I am shocked at the number of people who come up to me and say, "I'll never forget that vote.' " It was Aug. 5, 20 years ago. I'm sure nobody remembers that, except for me.

If you read what was written, they say I promised never to raise taxes. That's absolutely untrue. You don't know what's going to happen when you get down there.

When he called and said, "What would it take?" I said I wanted to talk about entitlements, I wanted further cuts, and I'll only be your last vote - if you need it. And he did.

Q Have you ever regretted it?

You know, I've never regretted it. But I was surprised that I was asked. I said to him, "You're going to lose this seat."

And then as it unfolded, it turned out to be the place where growth started - it was the largest, most dramatic growth since World War II. Clinton knew that it was defining his presidency, so we knew that it had to pass. I knew that it had to pass.

In 2000, there was a surplus, and everyone said it started with that vote. So I never regretted it.

Q You voted against earlier versions of that budget. Voters may see that as a flip-flop. How can they trust you to stick to a position now?

I argue it a different way. Sometimes there's a difference between representation and leadership.

If I walked into my office, everybody who's calling says, "Don't vote for it." But you know that people don't call when they're happy.

I could argue the good sides and the bad sides. In the end I knew it had to pass.

We should be sending people down there who are willing to make tough votes, even if they know that it's going to cause them problems. People are so annoyed with folks not getting stuff done now. There has to be something down there that creates a reasonable caucus.

Q Do you think any of your opponents are people who would be unwilling to compromise?

I don't think so. Isn't that a good non-answer?

Q Just offering you the chance. Will the Clintons be stumping for your campaign?

Let me back up and say that I really want to run on what I've done. They've been very nice about my doing this, but I think it's way too premature to talk in terms of whether, when, all this kind of stuff.

It's terribly important to underscore that I've run several races without worrying about the Clintons' coattails and have won. I really want to run on my own bona fides.

Q So they won't be a big presence in the campaign?

Obviously we've talked about it. They've been very nice, but I'm not counting on them or not counting on them. Right now I'm concentrating on what we can do.

Q Speaking of the Clintons, are you expecting a new grandchild anytime soon?

Not that I know of.

Q Shucks. I was hoping the second-biggest paper in Philly could break the story of the heir to Clintonia.

Do you know how many grandchildren I have? I have a ton of grandchildren. Eighteen. So there's no pressure from here.