Rep. Albio Sires was lucky to avoid getting pulled into the Hudson County warette this year when a possible Democratic primary challenge from Freeholder Tilo Rivas was withdrawn. According to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission, Sires raised just $69,973 in the first quarter of 2018 and has $232,633 in the bank.
That’s not a lot for an incumbent, but it’s enough for Sires, whose safe Democratic 8th district gave him 77% of the vote in 2016. Hillary Clinton bested Donald Trump there by 54 points, 75%-21%.
This fall, Sires faces a token Republican challenger, Rev. John Muniz of Jersey City.
Among Sires’ problem going forward is his burn rate of campaign dollars. He spent $48,675 so far this year – not much less than what he raised. He’ll need to step up his fundraising if he wants to protect his seat in 2020, when Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop might run.
Among Sires’ donors is Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise, who wrote personal checks for $800 in March. One contribution came the day after Sires endorsed DeGise for re-election and the other later in the month. There’s nothing wrong with that: DeGise has always been supportive of DeGise and had already given him $500 for the current cycle.