The Morris County-based 25th legislative district just hosted a competitive election last year, as State Sen. Anthony M. Bucco (R-Boonton) fought to retain his late father’s Senate seat and Assemblywoman Aura Dunn (R-Mendham) tried to hold onto the Assembly seat the younger Bucco left behind. Both Republicans won, but only after a long, expensive, and hard-fought campaign.
But this year, the district has largely faded from both parties’ view, and fundraising reports released today by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) show that Republicans have built a clear advantage – though not an insurmountable one.
Bucco has raised $138,923 since the June primary and transferred another $116,406 from previous campaign accounts; of that haul, he’s spent $139,916 and has $115,412 left over.
His Democratic opponent, Morris Township Mayor Jeff Grayzel, raised $60,364 and transferred $38,155. After spending $72,139, Grayzel has $26,379 left in cash-on-hand.
Both Bucco and Grayzel also have joint fundraising committees set up with their Assembly running mates, and so far, Grazyel’s has been the more successful of the two.
The Democratic joint committee raised $127,800 and spent nearly all of it, reporting $20,434 left on-hand. Republicans’ joint committee, on the other hand, raised a smaller $98,324, but most of it – $65,181 – is still left for them to use in the final month of the campaign.
Both Dunn and her running mate, Assemblyman (and potential Assembly minority leader) Brain Bergen (R-Denville), significantly outraised their Democratic opponents on their individual accounts. Dunn raised $63,665, combined it with $76,269 in transferred funds, and has $72,263 left in the bank; Bergen raised a similar $65,476, but only transferred $24,838, and now has $19,128 on-hand.
One of the Democratic nominees, Lauren Barnett, raised a respectable $26,240 and transferred another $22,235. Barnett has spent $33,141 and has $15,334 left.
Her counterpart, Patricia Veres, fared significantly less well; after raising $12,526 and transferring $6,755, she’s spent only $2,657 and has $16,623 left.