U.S. Senate candidate Bob Hugin said on Saturday that his campaign’s internal polling has the challenger up two points over Sen. Bob Menendez.
That could explain the vast millions Hugin has been pouring into the campaign as it enters its final days. He’s spent $36 million of his own money on the race so far, close to double the $20 million he promised Republican leaders he’d spend on the contest.
It’d be difficult to think of a logical reason for Hugin to invest so much in the race—by some estimates, the $36 million is close to a third of his worth—if he was relying solely on public polling, which has consistently pegged Menendez ahead, most often with a statistically insignificant lead.
“One, I’m glad the outside world sees it the way they see it, because obviously the Senate Democrats don’t see it that way with all the money they’re putting into it,” Hugin said. “They’re piling a lot of money in the last two weeks, and they’re not wasting money because they have tough races in Florida, Missouri, Indiana, wherever they want, so I don’t think they’ve got $10 million floating around.”
The Senate Majority PAC, in an effort to combat the massive spending gap between Hugin and Menendez, has spent about $8 million on ad buys against Hugin since mid-October.