New Jersey Senate Minority Leader Thomas Kean, Jr. raised $508,918 in the first quarter of 2020 and has $1,138,477 cash-on-hand in his bid to unseat freshman Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) in New Jersey’s 7th district.
This marks Kean’s fourth robust fundraising quarter since he entered the race last April in what is expected to be one of the most competitive and closely watched congressional races of the cycle.
Kean raised $302,921 during the last three months of 2019 and finished last year with $792,501 in the bank. So far, he’s raised $1,749,905 for his congressional bid.
His fundraising numbers might have been even higher if not for the coronavirus pandemic that has reduced fundraising opportunities for all candidates.
According to Kean campaign manager Theresa Winegar, 85% of Kean’s donors are from New Jersey and 56% came from small dollar contributions.
“These are difficult times and our supporters are sacrificing to make sure this campaign has the resources we need to be successful in November,” Kean said. “Now more than ever, we need leaders that will work together on economic recovery, increase the quality of our healthcare and keep our nation safe and secure. I am so thankful to the friends and neighbors who believe in my candidacy and our mission to return our local New Jersey values to Washington.”
Malinowski, a former assistant U.S. Secretary of State, beat five-term incumbent Leonard Lance by 16,200 votes, 52%-47%, becoming the first Democrat to win the 7th district seat since 1956.
As a first-time candidate, Malinowski raised nearly $6.3 million – more than double what Lance raised. Those totals do not include independent expenditures made for or against either candidate, or spending made by candidates’ political action committees.
During his first year in Congress, Malinowski raised almost $2.4 million and closed the year with a strong $615,000 4th quarter. He had more than $2 million in his warchest and has not yet released his 1st quarter report to the Federal Election Commission.
Voter registration in New Jersey’s 7th district has now flipped to a Democratic majority. As of last month, the 7th had 382 more Democrats than Republicans. When it was drawn in 2012, the 7th had 29,997 more Republicans than Democrats. On General Election Day 2018, the GOP registration edge had shrunk to 6,709.
Kean faces nominal challenges in the July 7 Republican primary from physician Raafat Barsoom and human resources executive Tom Phillips. Barsoom won 11% of the vote against Lance in the 2018 primary and 17% as the GOP State Senate candidate in the 29th district against Teresa Ruiz (D-Newark).