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Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen. (Photo: Facebook).

Frelinghuysen still wielding big campaign warchest

Ex-NJ congressman helping Kean, backed losing candidate in West Virginia incumbent vs. incumbent GOP primary

By David Wildstein, May 19 2022 2:23 pm

Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-Harding) still has $223,841 remaining in his old campaign account after spending $204,682 since he retired from Congress in January 2019.

Frelinghuysen has contributed $4,000 to Tom Kean, Jr.’s bid for the Republican House nomination in New Jersey’s 7th district.  He’s also contributed $2,000 to the 2023 re-election campaign of State Sen. Jon Bramnick (R-Westfield).

He has also written $2,000 checks to five Republican House members, as well as former Rep. Bruce Poliquin, who is seeking to regain the Maine congressional seat he lost in 2018.

In the May 10 West Virginia GOP primary, Frelinghuysen sent $2,000 to Rep. David McKinley, who had been redistricted into a fight with another Republican congressman, Alex Mooney.  Former President Donald Trump endorsed Mooney, who defeated McKinley, a 75-year-old moderate, by a 54%-36% margin.

The Frelinghuysen and Kean families have been political allies for most of the last century.  Frelinghuysen’s father and Kean’s grandfather served in the House together for six years in the 1950s, and Frelinghuysen backed former Gov. Tom Kean in a 1974 GOP congressional primary against Millicent Fenwick.

But in 1928, Kean’s great-grandfather, Hamilton Fish Kean, defeated Frelinghuysen’s cousin, former U.S. Senator Joseph Frelinghuysen, in the Republican U.S. Senate primary.  Kean won with 33.6% and Frelinghuysen finished third in a field of five candidates with 27.6%.

Former Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-Ventnor) has $146,156 cash-on-hand after receiving $14,558 from former Upper Township Mayor Drew McCrosson.  As LoBiondo’s former campaign treasurer, in 2011 McCrosson admitted to embezzling $458,000 from the campaign and was sentenced to 2 ½ years in federal prison.  McCrosson was ordered to make full restation to the LoBiondo campaign and is still paying off that debt.

LoBiondo retired from the House after the 2018 election with $229,190 in the bank.

He contributed $1,000 in the first quarter of this year to a former colleague, Rep. Billy Long.  Long is seeking the GOP nomination for an open U.S. Senate seat in Missouri.  Polls have him in the single digits.

Former Rep. Leonard Lance (R-Clinton Township) has $23,106 remaining in his campaign account.  This year, he has contributed $2,500 to the Hunterdon County Republican Committee and $1,000 to Rep. Liz Cheney, who faces a tough fight for re-election to her Wyoming congressional seat after voting to impeach Trump and supporting a House probe of the events at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.  Lance left the House in January 2019 with $63,170 cash-on-hand.

Former Rep. Rob Andrews (D-Haddon Heights), who resigned from the House in 2014 during an House Ethics Committee probe of alleged misuse of campaign funds – a complaint the former congressman said was baseless – still has $217,951 in his campaign account.

This year, he spent $777 on storage and bank fees.   He left Congress eight years ago with $303,681 cash-on-hand.

It’s been fourteen years since Rep. Jim Saxton (R-Mount Holly) retired from Congress, but he still has $10,610 remaining in his campaign account.  He hasn’t spent anything this year.

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