Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Dems Lead in Raising Cash for County Races

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Dems Lead in Raising Cash for County Races

Article excerpt

The Democrats running for office in Passaic County head into the final week of the campaign with a lot more money to spend than the Republicans, state records show.

The Passaic County Democratic Committee had $453,593 in its account as of Sept. 30, compared with $9,276 for the Passaic County Regular Republican Organization, according to the latest report by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission. There's still time for Republicans to close the gap, but the Democrats' 50 to 1 advantage can only help Sheriff Richard H. Berdnik, Freeholders Terry Duffy and Pat Lepore, and Surrogate Bernice Toledo in their reelection bids.

The Republican challengers Frank Feenan, Tafari Anderson, Stephen Arienta and Terri Reicher all have raised money on their own, but their ELEC reports show that their cash supplies are dwindling. Feenan has so far raised $51,172 for his sheriff's race and began running television ads on Friday. Reicher still has about $30,000 in her account for the low-key surrogate race against Toledo, but freeholder challengers Anderson and Arienta are almost out of money.

The Democratic candidates also have raised lots of money. Berdnik, seeking his third term, had raised $258,778 in his war chest. Lepore had $20,073 and Duffy had $4,056, according to ELEC.

The lopsided money race comes as no surprise, given that Democrats have held the sheriff's post since 2000 and all seven seats on the Freeholder Board since 2013. And with polls showing Hillary Clinton with a commanding double-digit lead over Donald J. Trump at the top of the ticket, the Passaic County GOP would be hard- pressed to capture any of the county races.

Trump's appeal to many GOP voters at this point is questionable. GOP Chairman John Traier said the hope is there will be a large "anti-Hillary" vote, particularly in up-county towns. …

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