With about a month to go before the gubernatorial primary, former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie has $3,033,463 on hand after raising a total of $4,686,183, according to the 29 day pre-election reports published on the Election Law Enforcement Commission’s Web site.
That's more than six times what Christie's nearest rival, former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegnan, has on hand. Lonegan has raised almost half of what Christie has, with $2,109,093 in total, but has $481,824 on hand.
Both Lonegan and Christie receive two-to-one matching funds from the state.
The other Republican gubernatorial candidate, Assemblyman Rick Merkt (R-Mendham), has raised $43,900 in total — most of which is his own money. He's spent $41,507 and has $2,392 in cash.
But while Christie is just short of maxing out in matching funds for the primary — having received $2.86 million from the state, which is just shy of the $3.1 million limit for the primary — Lonegan is still eligible to receive almost $2 million more from the program.
Democratic incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine, who is not expected to face a competitive primary challenge, has raised a total of $2.723 million to date and has $321,156 on hand. Of the total raised, $2.05 million is Corzine's own money. Corzine, who is likely to pour millions more of his own money into the race, declined to take matching funds.
Corzine primary challenger Carl Bergmanson, the former mayor of Glen Ridge, raised $1,725 and has the same amount on hand. Another Corzine challenger, perennial candidate Jeff Boss, raised and spent roughly $800 of his own money.
Independent candidate Christopher Daggett, who filed a report on April 15, raised $3,525 — $3,400 of which was donated by his wife, Beatrice. Daggett has $3,472 on hand.