Home>Articles>Applefield raises $134k, most of it from himself, in bid to oust Chris Smith

Democratic congressional candidate David Applefield, a former journalist, is challenging Rep. Christopher Smith in NJ-4.

Applefield raises $134k, most of it from himself, in bid to oust Chris Smith

Front-runner to take on 20-term incumbent looks to be Stephanie Schmid, a former diplomat

By David Wildstein, October 14 2019 10:18 pm

Democrat David Applefield has raised $134,494 for his bid to unseat Rep. Christopher Smith (R-Hamilton) in New Jersey’s 4th district — most of it self-financed — according to 3rd quarter reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

Applefield, a former journalist, brought in $60,753 over the last three months.   He has spent $27,112 and has $107,381 cash-on-hand.

He loaned himself an addition $60,000 for the 3rd quarter, bringing his personal contribution up to $120,000 so far.

The early front-runner to take on Smith appears to be Stephanie Schmid, a former U.S. Department of State official who left her post as U.S. Foreign Policy Counsel to the Center for Reproductive Rights to run for Congress.

Schmid said two weeks ago that she had raised more than $100,000 in her first month as a House candidate.

Another candidate, former United Nations project manager Christine Conforti, has raised $4,950 and has $3,346 in the bank.

Another Democrat, lobbyist Tiffany Kaszuba, has not yet filed 3rd quarter reports with the Federal Election Commission.

Former Asbury Park Councilman Jim Keady, who ran in the 2018 primary, is also considering another run.

Smith is seeking re-election to his 21st term in the U.S. House of Representatives.  If he wins re-election, he would set the record as the longest-serving congressman in New Jersey history.

With 21,635 more Republicans than Democrats, the 4th is the only House district in New Jersey to become more Republican over the last decade.  When the last map was drawn after the 2010 census, the district had 12,193 more Republicans than Democrats.

Smith was first elected to Congress in 1980, at age 27, after thirteen-term Rep. Frank B. Thompson, Jr. (D-Trenton) was indicted as part of the Abscam scandal.  Smith won, 57%-41%, in a district that Ronald Reagan carried by three points.

Democrats thought they had a shot at beating Smith last year when Democrat Josh Welle raised $1.8 million, the often underestimated GOP congressman raised $1.5 million and won by 12 percentage points.

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