Republican gubernatorial candidate Jack Ciattarelli has raised more than $850,000 for his bid to unseat Gov. Phil Murphy next year, more than enough to trigger the release of matching funds during the first ten days of January.
Ciattarelli is reporting that it raised $818,527 before the September 30 reporting deadline and has brought in more than $35,000 more over the last two weeks.
A former assemblyman who entered the race for the Republican nomination in January, Ciattarelli had a $301,025 fundraising haul during the 3rd quarter of 2020.
That means Ciattarelli has qualified to receive at least another $1,388,000 in public financing from the state – a number that will likely swell as the Republican contender continues to raise money over the 77 days still remaining in the 4th quarter.
In June, the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission raised the maximum contribution limit for a gubernatorial candidate from $4,300 to $4,900, increased the threshold to qualify for matching funds from $430,000 to $490,000, and upped the amount not matched from $138,000 to $156,000.
“Thanks to the hard work of Jack and our Finance Committee, support for this campaign grows every day – even in the midst of the pandemic,” said Jeff Vanderbeek, the owner of the New Jersey Devils and Ciattarelli’s campaign finance chairman. . “No campaign ever qualified for matching funds as early as we did and in Q3 the momentum continued. We are confident that Jack will have the infrastructure and resources necessary to make Governor Murphy One & Done in ’21.”
Murphy announced on October 1 that he intended to seek re-election and had formed a campaign committee to begin raising money during the 4th quarter of 2020. First Lady Tammy Murphy is serving as campaign finance chair.
The governor has indicated that he will seek public financing for his re-election campaign.
“The people of New Jersey know that our state is broken, and that Governor Murphy can’t fix it,” said Ciattarelli. “We’ve seen him fail to protect nursing home veterans and seniors, crush small businesses, and, for political gain, take away our right to vote in person. He’s raised tolls, increased taxes and borrowed billions. Enough is enough. As Governor, I will make the tough decisions necessary to fix New Jersey and point us toward our state motto: Liberty and Prosperity, for all.”
So far, no other Republicans have entered the race for governor. Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick and GOP State Chairman Doug Steinhardt have both said they are seriously considering a run against Murphy.
Gubernatorial candidates are limited to $4.6 million in matching funds for the primary, and are subject to a $7.3 million cap on expenditures in pursuit of a major party nomination.
Ciattarelli can still qualify for an additional $3.2 million in public financing, if he raises an additional $1.6 million for the primary.