TOMS RIVER-Democrat socialist Congressman Andy Kim has been working hard to rebrand himself as a middle of the line, hard-working congressman representing the interests of all. This is a huge shift from two years ago when Kim operated a radical left-wing operation intent on unseating President Donald J. Trump.
Whether or not it’s believable or sincere, Kim has done a good job as a Congressman representing Congressional District 3, which serves a large portion of Ocean and Burlington Counties. Kim has been accessible, visible and active in the community, addressing three key issues that helped him defeat Republican Tom MacArthur in 2018. But can that political polish carry him across the finish line in November’s election?
That question lies in the hands of Republicans who still can’t decide who Kim’s opponent will be and they probably won’t until at least March when the parties in Ocean and Burlington traditionally hold their conventions to nominate a candidate.
Kim has raised nearly $2,000,000 in 2019 alone according to the Federal Election Commission.
Two candidates on the Republican side have announced their candidacies against Kim, Ocean County Lawyer John Novak and former Burlington County Freeholder Kate Gibbs. Burlington County has already endorsed their line support for Gibbs. Ocean County GOP Chairman Frank Holman has so far been reluctant to back Gibbs or Novak, but said he would like to see a challenger in the primary representing Ocean County.
Ocean County based engineer Frank Sadeghi had initially expressed interest in running, but has not made any indications of late.
With less than a year and the hint of yet another political primary brawl between Republicans in Ocean County, Kim can freely continue raising funds for re-election. At the rate he’s been going, Kim could have over $3.5 million to spend on re-election by November as Republicans are ready to once again dig in to fight each other to see who will have the honor of being on the receiving end of Kim’s huge campaign budget.