big spenders

RJC drops $800K to boost Lee Zeldin as race tightens

The group is seeking to label Zeldin’s Democratic opponent, chemistry professor Nancy Goroff, as a far-left candidate with radical views on Israel


Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) speaks at the U.S. Institute of Peace in May, 2019.

The Republican Jewish Coalition is dropping a massive ad buy and launching an aggressive get-out-the-vote effort to assist Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) in his tough reelection bid for New York’s 1st congressional district, Jewish Insider has learned. 

Zeldin, a three-term incumbent, is being challenged in the district — which the Cook Political Report classifies as “Lean Republican” — by chemistry professor Nancy Goroff. There are no recent public polls on the race, though an internal Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee poll puts Goroff in the lead. 

The RJC investment includes a $500,000 TV ad buy, $150,000 in digital advertising and $150,000 in direct mailers, people involved in the spend told JI. 

The ad, labeled “Nancy,” paints Zeldin’s Democratic opponent as a far-left candidate with radical views on Israel. In an interview, RJC executive director Matt Brooks described Goroff as a “radical J Street National Finance committee member whose views are far outside the mainstream of the Jewish community.” 

Brooks told JI that his group felt it was important to make the substantial investment because Zeldin, one of two Jewish Republican members of Congress, is “such a critical voice on behalf of the Jewish community. A loss of Lee Zeldin from Congress would be a devastating blow and one our community cannot afford.”

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