New Jersey GOP Senate candidate nabs NRA endorsement

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The group will be "active" in the final weeks of the race, Lonegan spokesman Rick Shaftan told PolitickerNJ.

"Mr. Lonegan is the only candidate in this race who will stand against Senators Dianne FeinsteinDianne FeinsteinHotel lobby cheers scrutiny on Airbnb GOP platform attempts middle ground on encryption debate Week ahead: Encryption fight poised to heat up MORE (D-CA) and Dick DurbinDick DurbinOpioid package clears key Senate hurdle Overnight Healthcare: Feds defend ObamaCare's affordability DNC chief spared in Sanders-Clinton talks: report MORE (D-IL) for your Second Amendment rights in the U.S. Senate," reads a release posted on Ammoland.com by the the National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund.

Shaftan told PolitickerNJ that the group's decision to engage in the race was significant because it's an indication outside observers believe he can win on Oct. 16.

Two consecutive polls released this week showed the race to be closer than expected, with Democrat Cory Booker's lead down from the mid-20s to the low double-digits, an indication Lonegan may be picking up some steam.

The NRA endorsement and activity in the race could give the Republican a much-needed boost of resources and media coverage as he fights an uphill battle in the blue-leaning state. Booker remains the heavy favorite to win.

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