CourierPostOnline

2 Democrats Qualify For Funds

CourierPostOnline — Wednesday, August 31, 2005

BY Courier-Post staff

Democratic Assembly candidates in the 6th District announced Tuesday they have become the first to qualify for public financing of their campaign under the Fair and Clean Elections pilot program.

Assemblyman Louis D. Greenwald, D-Voorhees, and his running mate, Pamela Rosen Lampitt of Cherry Hill, said they met the 3,000-contribution threshold.

With a Sept. 7 deadline on soliciting contributions fast approaching, their Republican opponents, Marc Fleischner of Berlin Borough and JoAnn R. Gurenlian of Haddonfield, have collected about half of the amount needed under the program, a GOP spokesman said.

"It is a historic day for the 6th District and the state of New Jersey," Greenwald said in a statement.

"Voters of the 6th District should take pride that this system was proven a success in their own backyard."

Under the Clean Elections program, which is being tried in both the 6th District in Camden County and the 13th District in Monmouth County, each candidate must collect 1,000 contributions of $5 and 500 contributions of $30. The money goes to the state, not the candidates.

"Obviously we congratulate them," Jeff Kasko, a spokesman for the Republican candidates, said. "The more candidates that make it, it's good for the voters."

Although he could not give an exact number of contributors to the GOP candidates, Kasko said, "we're coming up to 50 percent (of the 3,000 voters needed)."

"We should be there very soon," he said. "I'm hopeful that we're going to make it."

"We have proven that government belongs to the people, and that the influence of big money can be removed from politics," Lampitt said.

Greenwald and Lampitt encouraged voters of the 6th District to support their opponents in the process to enable both sides to qualify for state funds.

If both parties qualify, they will have the same amount to spend on the campaign, $130,200. If one party fails to qualify, it gets nothing and cannot collect outside contributions.

Voters can make qualifying contributions via an e-card or check or debit card. The state has set up a Web site – www.state.nj.us/treasury/clean_election.

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