Gottheimer has an astronomical budget of $12 million after a herculean 4th quarter

It was another fundraising quarter of Brobdingnagian proportions for the Human Fundraising Machine, with Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-Wyckoff) raising a monster $1,125,737 in the last three months of 2021.

The three-term Democratic congressman now heads into his re-election campaign armed with a leviathan of $12,012,196 in cash and a significantly more Democratic district than he pitted against a seven-term Republican in 2016.

Gottheimer has raised a whopping $4,268,457 so far this cycle, and a hefty $22,775,009 since launching his bid to unseat Rep. Scott Garrett (R-Wantage) in March 2015.

But Gottheimer’s warchest doesn’t scare off Republicans who think the race is winnable in President Joe Biden’s midterm election when the party in the White House traditionally loses House seats. A national Monmouth University poll released Wednesday knocked Biden’s job approvals 39%-54%.

Three Republicans want to take on Gottheimer in New Jersey’s 5th District: Nick De Gregorio, a US Marine Corps combat veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan; businessman Fred Schneiderman; and Frank Pallotta, an investment banker who lost to Gottheimer in 2020.

De Gregorio, who entered the race in November, had a strong first few months as a candidate, raking in $403,000; he has $375,000 in the bank. Pallotta announced his offer for a rematch in April and had $110,760 in cash as of September 30. It has yet to file its fundraising numbers for the fourth quarter.

Schneiderman entered the race this month; its first filing with the Federal Election Commission is expected in April. He hired former Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway to help run his campaign.

Gottheimer became a national figure in 2021 when he led a group of House centrists who lobbied for passage of an infrastructure bill that forced a budget showdown last summer, even at the expense of a larger spending plan pushed by progressives.

That put a target on his back, but with 68 days left until the April 4 filing deadline, he remains unopposed in the Democratic primary.

In 2020, he faced a main challenge from the left against Arati Kreibich, a councilor from Glen Rock. He won by 25,988 votes, 66.5% against 33.5%.

At this point, two years ago, Kreibich had raised $170,025 since entering the race in July 2019.

In the general election, Gottheimer defeated Pallotta by 31,842 votes, 53%-46%. Pallotta spent more than $1.4 million of his own money on his campaign.

Republicans held the 5th District seat for 36 years until Gottheimer, a former Clinton White House speechwriter, knocked out Garrett in a district carried by Donald Trump.

Last November, Gottheimer said he also raised about $2.9 million for Democratic candidates seeking federal, state and local positions.

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