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Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-Montclair). (Photo: Kevin Sanders for the New Jersey Globe)

Sherrill has a towering $5 million warchest after hulky 4th quarter

Democratic congresswoman raised nearly $3 million in 2021

By David Wildstein, January 24 2022 8:30 am

Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-Montclair) has a gargantuan $5,079,324 warchest for her re-election bid in New Jersey’s 11th district after raising a mammoth $775,895 during the fourth quarter of 2021.

Sherrill raised a whopping $2,956,409 in 2021 and begins her quest for a third term in Congress with a massive warchest and a more Democratic district after picking up Democratic towns like Millburn, Maplewood, South Orange and Dover in redistricting.

The former U.S. Navy helicopter pilot and federal prosecutor has raised more than $18 million since becoming a congressional candidate in May 2017.  Sherrill’s $1.2 million fundraising haul by the end of 2107 caused the 12-term Republican incumbent, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, to unexpectedly announce his retirement.

Sherrill won her House race by 46,262 votes, 57%-42%, flipping a House seat held by Republicans for 34 years.  She defeated Republican Rosemary Becchi, a former U.S. Senate Finance Committee tax counsel, by 29,150 votes, 53%-47%, in 2020.

The 11th district went from a district Joe Biden carried by 6.7% to won that he prevailed by 17.4%.  In last year’s gubernatorial election, Gov. Phil Murphy carried the district by five points.

Still, seven Republicans have already launched bids to take on Sherrill in Biden’s mid-term election, when House members of the president’s party historically lose seats, sometimes in districts worse than NJ-11:  Morris County Commissioner Tayfun Selen, former Kinnelon Council President Larry Casha, former assistant Passaic County Prosecutor Paul DeGroot, former Ridgefield Park councilman Robert Kovic, attorney Larry Friscia, Iraq War U.S. Army veteran Toby Anderson, and screenwriter Hillery Brotschol.

And two proven GOP vote-getters, Assemblywoman Aura Dunn (R-Mendham) and Morris County Surrogate Heather Darling, are carefully considering a challenge to Sherrill. If Dunn or Darling get in, there may not be much room for another candidate to compete for the organization lines.

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