The race in CD-5 is getting a bit of national attention.
Whip Steve Scalise, the second highest ranking Republican in the House, today endorsed Frank Pallotta, who is trying to unseat Josh Gottheimer.
“Taking back the House and putting a check on Joe Biden’s disastrous policies requires firing politically-entrenched Josh Gottheimer and runs right through New Jersey’s Fifth District,” Scalise said in a statement. Scalise, who is from Louisiana, added that the GOP conference will “benefit tremendously from Frank’s outsider expertise in finance and running a small business, as well as his deep ties to the district.”
This is a rematch of the 2020, CD-5 race in which Gottheimer won by about 32,000 votes.
There are differences this time around and no one truly knows what they’re going to mean.
In a non-presidential year, there will not be as many people voting. Also, the district has become more Democratic after the 2020 Census by moving east into more of Bergen County and losing rural Warren and parts of Sussex counties.
The release also brings up the failure of Gottheimer and the Democrats to restore the full federal tax deduction for state and local taxes or SALT. It’s now capped at $10,000 and House Dems have talked about removing the cap since 2019.
That hasn’t happened.
This is a legitimate issue and one you can expect Republican candidates to use throughout the campaign. At the same time, it may be prudent for them to have a response when Democrats point out that it was the Republicans who created the $10,000 cap. It was part of the 2017 federal tax reform bill.
In a recent message to supporters and potential donors, Pallotta was predictably upbeat, claiming that, “Polling shows my race has tightened and is now neck and neck.”