A year and a half after her gubernatorial bid was crushed by Gov. Chris Christie’s reelection juggernaut, former state senator Barbara Buono is still feeling the lingering hangover of that defeat, as she now faces accusations of violating state campaign finance rules.
Buono, a Metuchen Democrat and one-time Senate majority leader, may have to pay a fine of up to $13,600. The potential penalty stems from allegations made by the state Republican Party in January 2013, a few weeks after she declared her candidacy.
Buono is charged with illegally using the account for her aborted Senate reelection effort to pay for polling on the governor’s race. Buono and her campaign treasurer Martin Gizzi paid Myers Research & Strategies, a Democratic consulting firm in Washington, $37,250 to conduct the poll in January 2012, according to the state Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC).
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