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Tipsheet

Are Dems 'Bailing' on Malinowski in NJ-07 Race?

Have Democrats given up on New Jersey’s Rep. Tom Malinowski, who’s fending off a challenge from GOP opponent, Thomas Kean Jr. to represent the 7th district? 

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With two weeks to Election Day, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has largely left the two-term New Jersey Democrat on his own, the New Jersey Globe reports, noting that the DCCC spent little to keep the seat and has not yet reserved any air time in the remaining days. 

A DCCC spokesman pushed back on such reporting, however, claiming to have “made significant investments in field and communications to support Rep. Malinowski’s efforts.” 

He's also being assisted by the House Majority PAC, which spent about $1.25 million in ads to help Malinowski.

Still, the Democratic lawmaker is neck and neck in polling with Kean and the GOP is spending big to flip the seat, with the National Republican Congressional Committee putting $1.28 million into ads and the Congressional Leadership Fund dumping 3.8 million into the race. 

“Resources are allocated on the basis of where they can do the most good,” said Micah Rasmussen, the director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University.  “So unless a campaign is far enough ahead in internal polling or cash on hand that an infusion of additional funds won’t matter, a decision to not fund a campaign through Election Day can be viewed as troubling.”

Malinowski raised $7.7 million through the end of September and had nearly $2.8 million cash-on-hand; Kean raised almost $3.6 million and had more than $1.1 million banked during the same time period.

In 2020, Democrats outspent Republicans in the 7th district by a 2-1 margin.   Malinowski defeated Kean by one percentage point. [...]

A Democratic map approved last December made  the 7th district has become more Republican, albeit not unwinnable.  The new map’s 7th district is Biden +4, compared to Biden +10 currently.  Republican Jack Ciattarelli won the new 7th by thirteen points over Gov. Phil Murphy. (New Jersey Globe)

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Forecasts aren't looking good for Malinowski either, with FiveThirtyEight saying Kean is favored to win the seat, while Cook Political Report, Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics, and Inside Elections are all rating the race as lean Republican. 

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