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Rep. Tom Malinowski. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

Malinowski has colossal $1 million first-quarter fundraising haul

Democratic congressman’s cash-on-hand now at $3.5 million

By David Wildstein, April 11 2022 3:49 pm

Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) raised an astronomical $1.06 million during the first quarter of 2022 and has a massive $3.5 million warchest in his bid for re-election in New Jersey’s 7th district.

The two-term Central Jersey congressman has raised nearly $2 million in the last six months, an enormous haul for what is widely viewed as the state’s most competitive House race.  His cash-on-hand has swelled from $2.7 million as of the end of last year.

Malinowski raised $7.4 million for re-election bid two years ago, but exhausted nearly all of it to hold his seat against Republican Thomas Kean, Jr.  He won by just one percent, the narrowest margin of any Democratic incumbent in the nation in a district that has shifted blue over the last decade.

But he has quickly replenished his warchest, raising $923,020 in the three months of 2021 $816,320 in the second quarter of this year, and $872,830 during the third quarter.

Under a Democratic map approved last December, Malinowski’s district has become more Republican, albeit not unwinnable.  The new map’s 7th district is Biden +4, compared to Biden +10 currently.  Republican Jack Ciattarelli won the new 7th by thirteen points over Gov. Phil Murphy.

Malinowski faces a perennial candidate, Roger Bacon, in the Democratic primary, and a possible rematch with Kean, the former minority leader of the New Jersey State Senate.

Kean has secured party endorsements in Union, Hunterdon, Morris, Somerset, Sussex and Warren counties and is the front-runner for the Republican nomination.

Still, he faces a GOP primary against Assemblyman Erik Peterson (R-Franklin), 27-year-old humanitarian John Henry Isemann, former gubernatorial candidate Phil Rizzo, public works contractor Kevin Dorlon, and U.S. Navy veteran Sterling Irwin Schwab.

The current 7th district, which includes parts of Union, Somerset, Essex, Warren, Morris and all of Hunterdon, was drawn to elect a Republican congressman.  But in the 2018 wave election during President Donald Trump’s mid-terms, Malinowski ousted five-term Rep. Leonard Lance (R-Clinton Township).

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