New Jersey Democrats are sending thousands of dollars to Malinowski’s campaign

Democrats Transfer Money to Help Malinowski in New Jersey House Race

posted at 1:04 pm on October 6, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

The Democrats are spending their way to the nomination to take on New Jersey governor Chris Christie in the fall, raising questions about the party’s priorities in the presidential race. According to the Washington Post, the New Jersey Democrats are sending tens of thousands of dollars to the Democratic congressional candidate in the state’s 11th district, Mary Pat Malinowski, in an apparent effort to bolster her campaign in a tough reelection fight.

In an interview with The Post, Malinowski says she has no reason for the donations, which are coming from the New Jersey Democratic Party, the Malinowski campaign and her campaign finance consultants. In a statement, a New Jersey Democratic Party spokesman said the party “is supporting the work of Governor Chris Christie” and the congressional race in New Jersey “is a very competitive and important race for our party and our country.” The statement adds that if “any of our New Jersey Democratic Members were to receive personal financial benefits from a candidate in a federal election while serving in Congress, that is an issue that the Democratic Party must address.”

The Democrats’ involvement in the presidential race is not new. The party has been sending money to Karl Rove in support of George W. Bush’s 2004 presidential bid. The amount of money raised by Rove’s Crossroads organization was disclosed to the Federal Election Commission as $23 million. The amount raised by Malinowski’s political organization — American Bridge 21st Century — was disclosed to the FEC as $1.15 million.

As my colleague Ezra Klein noted in a post earlier today, the donation is unusual for a number of reasons. First, in recent years, the Democrats have had a very active fundraising operation when it comes to presidential races. The campaign for George W. Bush’s reelection raised over $500 million, while the 2010 election cycle was the first in which the Democratic National Committee raised over $1 billion as part of its general election fundraising efforts. The New York Times reported this week that the DNC has “an ambitious strategy to pump cash into candidates and causes

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