Why is Moneybags Murphy taking matching funds?

So mega-rich limousine liberal Phil Murphy (D-Goldman Sachs) isn’t looking to be a hero and break spending records this fall, Save Jerseyans, surprising some observers by agreeing to a $13.8 million public matching funds spending cap for the general election should he prevail (as expected) next Tuesday.


My best guess is some combination of these three considerations:

(1) Murphy is attempting to mitigate the argument that he’s “buying” the election, a charge which could arguably impact enthusiasm with the Bernie elements of his Democrat base;

(2)  He’s already spent $700,000 per polling percentage point in the Democrat primary; having bought the bosses and secured the nomination, the Goldman Sachs alum is content to stop stop spending his own money; and

(3) Why not let Super PACs help carry the load? Independent expenditure groups (like the NJEA’s own political arm which is strongly pro-Murphy) will be back in force this year, liberated from the spending constraints partisan campaign committees face, and Republicans don’t have an answer to them in this state.