NJ House Races: Incumbency and Money

Re-apportionment brought changes in each congressional district and reduced our delegation from 13 to 12 members. All incumbents won their races. In the two races without an incumbent (CD 9 and 10) Democrats won in very blue territory. Thus unsurprisingly 6 Republicans and 6 Democrats will form the new NJ Congressional delegation. Incumbency plays such a dominant role in our gerrymandered districts that many challengers were able to raised little money, and a few made meager efforts to succeed.  (All race reports are from POLITICO.) (All financial reports are from the FEC.)

CD 1 In spite of allegations of ethical violations, incumbent Democrat Rob Andrews won handily by 67.9% against Republican Greg Horton 30.3% who reported only $12,000 in campaign contributions.

CD 2 Ten-term incumbent Republican Frank LoBiondo won more closely with 57.9% against Democrat Cassandra Shober 40.1% who raised only $55,000.

CD 3 This was the closest race with incumbent Republican Jon Runyan winning 53.5% against  Democrat Shelley Adler 45.1% in a Republican-favored district. Each raised large sums and had SuperPAC expenditures issued in support of and opposition to them.

CD 4 Long-time Republican incumbent Chris Smith with 67.9% beat Democrat Brian Froelich 31.0% who raised $80,000.  

CD 5  Incumbent seriously conservative Republican Scott Garrett won with 154,000 votes (55.5%) against Democrat Adam Gussen with 117,000 votes (42.5%). Bergen voters represent the vast majority of CD 5 and voted 193,000 for Obama and 154,000 for Romney. There is no breakdown available by county for CD 5. However, while the vote for Garret was about the same in CD 5 as the vote for Romney  in Bergen, there were 76,000 more votes for Obama in Bergen than there were for Gussen in CD 5. What this suggests is that many individuals who voted in Bergen for Obama failed to vote for Gussen in CD 5. Gussen reported no receipts in his FEC filing, but a group called Gussen for Congress reported donation receipts from individuals of $30,000 in a section of the FEC report reserved for donations from committees (not individuals.) It appears the candidate reported his receipts under an incorrect category. Gussen seems to have entered campaign mode only about six weeks before election.

CD 6 Democrat incumbent Frank Pallone with 63.3% trounced Republican Tea Party candidate Anna Little 35.3%.

CD 7 Former State legislator Republican Leonard Lance won with a more narrow victory of 57.7% over Assemblyman Chivukula 39.6%. Both were well funded. The DCCC recognized Chivukula by naming this “a new emerging race.”

CD 8 Democrat incumbent Albio Sires won with a high 78.1% against a Republican with 19% who reported no expenditures to the FEC.

CD 9 Sheldon Adelson who infused $1 million of SuperPAC money in support of Republican challenger Shmuley Boteach should feel embarrassed. Former CD 8 incumbent Bill Pascrell won a whopping 73.6% to 25.4%.

CD 10 Following the death of long-time Democrat incumbent Donald Payne and the succeeding heated primary, Don Payne, Jr., a councilman and freeholder, emerged as the Democratic candidate. He won a two-month special election by 95 points and the regular 2-year term election by 76 points against virtually non-existent opponents. He has big shoes to fill.

CD 11 Family political dynasty member and Republican incumbent Rodney Frelinghusen won with 59.3% against Democrat John Arvanites 39.6% who raised $92,000.

CD 12 Scientist and Jeopardy winner Democrat incumbent Rush Holt won with 68.8% against Eric Beck 29.9% who raised a more respectable $123,000 against an awesome incumbent.  

Comments (10)

  1. deciminyan

    Two years ago, I watched with intense shock and disappointment as John Adler delivered his concession speech on election night. And I felt particularly sad for his four boys who, along with Shelley, stood justifiably proud at their father’s accomplishments.

    Little did I know that the disappointment would be intensified two years later, when Shelley and the boys stood on the same stage, without John, to once again concede to an ill-qualified tool of the GOP establishment.

    Shelley Adler’s concession was dignified and heartfelt. She was not the only one who had to push back tears in the room. Thank you, Shelley, for putting up a good fight. And best wishes to you and your family.





    Reply
  2. Nick Lento

    …there had been a better outreach to the young people, new voters and minorities who came out to vote for Obama.

    Many of those aren’t party line or party loyalty types…..had Jason Castle been the nominee I suspect he would have won all the votes Gussen won, by default, and earned many many thousands more.

    >>>”CD 5  Incumbent seriously conservative Republican Scott Garrett won with 154,000 votes (55.5%) against Democrat Adam Gussen with 117,000 votes (42.5%). Bergen voters represent the vast majority of CD 5 and voted 193,000 for Obama and 154,000 for Romney. There is no breakdown available by county for CD 5. However, while the vote for Garret was about the same in CD 5 as the vote for Romney  in Bergen, there were 76,000 more votes for Obama in Bergen than there were for Gussen in CD 5. What this suggests is that many individuals who voted in Bergen for Obama failed to vote for Gussen in CD 5. Gussen reported no receipts in his FEC filing, but a group called Gussen for Congress reported donation receipts from individuals of $30,000 in a section of the FEC report reserved for donations from committees (not individuals.) It appears the candidate reported his receipts under an incorrect category. Gussen seems to have entered campaign mode only about six weeks before election.”<<<

    Reply
  3. Bill Orr (Post author)

    Politicker NJ’s article yesterday on the House races had the headline: “Congressional Map Wins the Day.” It’s a sad commentary for democracy when a small committee creates a map that pre-ordains the outcome of twelve House races. Incumbents had vast sums of money, safe districts, and numerous other advantages.  Against such odds, challengers could raise little money and some surrendered to the futility of their efforts. Maps should not determine election results. People should determine election results.  

    Reply
  4. carolh

    to the popular candidate himself, but also his incredible campaign staff.  Dave Parano is the most amazing campaign manager I have ever met. I was fortunate to have him helping me when I ran for Freeholder.  He knows the opposition better than they know themselves and he is a tireless, cheerful warrior anyone would gladly march into battle with.  Even Sheldon Adelson didn’t stand a chance against this well – organized battle tested campaign manager.  Congratulations to both Congressman Pascrell, AND his incredible staff led by the indomitable Dave Parano.  

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *