POLITICS
10/14/2013 11:39 am ET | Updated Oct 14, 2013

Cory Booker Has 8-1 Fundraising Lead Over Opponent Steve Lonegan

Newark Mayor Cory Booker (D) has outraised his Republican opponent in New Jersey's special Senate election by 8-to-1, pulling in $11.2 million compared to Steve Lonegan's $1.35 million, according to The Star-Ledger.

The fundraising total for Booker puts him on par with other top New Jersey politicians, including Gov. Chris Christie (R) and Sen. Bob Menendez (D), and solidifies Booker's celebrity politician status.

Booker is the clear favorite to win Wednesday's vote and has consistently held a double-digit lead in the polls over Lonegan, although that once-massive lead has shrunk to around 10 points.

The Star-Ledger notes that Booker was aided in his fundraising by celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, actor Ben Affleck and director Steven Spielberg. A report by the campaign finance watchdog MapLight found that 77 percent of Booker's money came from outside New Jersey.

Independent groups are also spending big to support Booker's candidacy. Independence USA PAC, the super PAC funded entirely by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I), has waded into the race with $732,535 in support for Booker. Mobilization Project, a super PAC funded by Democrats and Republicans on Wall Street, has spent $532,447 for Booker.

Lonegan, the former state director for the New Jersey chapter of the Koch brothers-founded Americans for Prosperity, has received support from Koch-linked and other conservative groups. American Commitment, American Commitment Action Fund and American Future Fund, all backed by the network of Koch money groups, has spent a combined $359,980 to support Lonegan.

Overall, outside groups have spent $1.3 million to back Booker and just $510,364 for Lonegan.

The Star-Ledger reports that "a top campaign aide last week blasted the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the main fundraising arm of the Republican Party in U.S. Senate races, for leaving Lonegan to fend for himself against Booker."

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