The Democratic candidates in South Jersey’s two highly competitive congressional elections both said Thursday that their campaigns had raised $2 million or more in the last three months, an impressive quarterly haul for House races.
Rep. Andy Kim, a freshman seeking reelection in New Jersey’s 3rd Congressional District, raised $2 million from July through September, campaign spokesman Andrew Mamo said. The campaign has raised more than $6.5 million since Kim took office in 2019, Mamo said.
“I’m incredibly proud of the work our team has done to put us in a position to succeed over the next 33 days,” Kim said in a statement. “This overwhelming grassroots support will enable us to ensure that every voter hears our message, makes a plan, and casts their vote by Nov. 3.”
Amy Kennedy, a former teacher who lives in Brigantine and is married to former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy, raised $2.2 million in the quarter for her Democratic campaign to unseat freshman Republican Rep. Jeff Van Drew in the 2nd District. Van Drew, a longtime conservative Democrat, was elected to Congress in 2018 before switching parties late last year.
“These numbers clearly show what Amy has been hearing as she travels across the district,” Kennedy campaign manager Josh Roesch said. “The people of South Jersey are ready for a representative in Congress that cares more about serving the community than their own political career.”
Both districts were carried by Barack Obama before flipping to Donald Trump in 2016, and both are seen as among the most competitive House races in the country.
Van Drew’s campaign didn’t immediately say Thursday how much it raised last quarter. Nor did the campaign of Republican David Richter, the wealthy former CEO of a construction company who is challenging Kim and has partly funded his own campaign.
A fuller picture of the campaigns’ finances will emerge in federal filings to be released Oct. 15. Campaigns sometimes release top-line fundraising numbers before that as a show of political strength.
Kennedy also partly funded her own campaign during the primary. She has aired $1 million worth of ads in the 2nd District since winning in July, far more than Van Drew’s $136,000, according to the ad-tracking firm Advertising Analytics. A Democratic super PAC has spent another $1 million, with no significant investment from other Republican groups.
In the 3rd District, Kim has spent $1 million on the airwaves since the primary, according to Advertising Analytics. Richter said he spent $200,000 during that time. Outside Democratic groups are also far outspending their Republican counterparts in the race.
With only about a month until Election Day, many New Jersey voters are now receiving mail ballots and some have already voted. The election is being conducted mostly by mail.
Encompassing Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland, and Salem Counties, along with parts of four other counties, New Jersey’s 2nd District is a political battleground. Despite being held by a Republican for more than 20 years before Van Drew captured it for Democrats, the district voted twice for Obama before backing Trump by 1 percentage point.
Made up of almost all of Burlington County and a large part of Ocean County, the 3rd District is a longtime Republican stronghold in a Democratic state. Kim won in 2018 by fewer than 4,000 votes.