Inveterate grassroots animal CD4 Democrat Jim Keady tonight showed evidence of a zest to continue to scrap for the nomination here, even though Mercer, Ocean and Monmouth all opted for the more financially robust candidate in the convention season.
At a Moms Demand Action forum, Keady flashed a grin when reminding his audience of the following: “I’ve raised more money in the district than the gentleman I’m running against and a 38-year congressman combined.”
Keady wants the seat occupied by U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-4), but so does retired Navy officer Josh Welle, who has $150,000 cash on hand to Keady’s $39K, according to the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
Hoping to tap that reservoir of progressive feeling in an anti-Trump year and expose Welle as a poor standard-bearer for that most impassioned portion of the party electorate, Keady said his cash haul doesn’t include the checks of corporate donors.
Running a moderate, let’s-focus-on-the-general-election effort, Welle has the three relevant lines in the 4th District, which adds up to a primary edge. But Keady shows no signs of giving in as run competes with his rival all the way through the June Primary.
Welle refused to get tangled up with his tormentor at the forum, gently riding his wave of organizational advantage as he pledged to make public safety a priority.
Running as the so-called “Inclusion candidate,” Dr. Felicia Stoler also participated in tonight’s forum.