MIDDLETOWN, N.J. (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joe Kyrillos and his wife earned a combined $437,500 last year, according to joint tax returns his campaign released Friday.

The couple paid $130,763 in federal and state taxes, the records show. They derived most of their income from his job as a commercial real estate broker and hers as an insurance consultant. He earns $49,000 a year as a state senator.

The candidate, who is 52 and lives in Middletown Township, released tax returns he and his wife, Susan, filed for 2009-2011 at his campaign headquarters in Middletown on Friday. His opponent, Democratic incumbent Robert Menendez, plans to release his tax returns for the past five years on Thursday in New Brunswick.

Kyrillos' campaign said it was seeking transparency by releasing returns for multiple years.

"It's clear had Sen. Kyrillos not led this charge, Sen. Menendez would have continued to keep New Jerseyans in the dark," said Kyrillos' campaign manager Chapin Fay.

Menendez's campaign called on the challenger to release more details about the sources of his personal business income.

"Without knowing the nature of Joe Kyrillos' reported outside income, New Jerseyans are left with no assurances that this income is entirely unrelated to his public duties," said Menendez' campaign manager Michael Soliman.

Tax returns have been an issue in the presidential election.

Republican Mitt Romney has released his 2010 tax return and has pledged to release his 2011 return before the Nov. 6 election. Romney has said he paid at least 13 percent in taxes during the past decade.

Kyrillos paid 37 percent last year in federal taxes and 8 percent in state taxes.

The couple earned $365,509 in income in 2010 and $381,252 in 2009. They paid $95,811 in federal and state taxes in 2010 and $117,820 in 2009.

Kyrillos, who has been a state legislator for 24 years, gave $14,175 to charity last year, paid $27,307 in mortgage interest and claimed $1,464 in medical/dental expenses.

The couple also claimed a capital gains loss of $18,529 for a mutual fund bought for $24,963 in 2005 and sold last year for $6,435.

They also claimed an $8,409 loss on a rental condominium in St. Croix, Virgin Islands, and a $701 loss on an East Brunswick commercial building in which Kyrillos has a small stake.

He claimed $4,424 in meals, entertainment and travel expenses related to his legislative duties.

The couple claimed their two children as dependents.

Kyrillos faces an uphill battle to unseat the better funded, more well-known Menendez. The Hudson County senator was appointed to fill the remainder of then-Sen. Jon Corzine's term and is seeking his second, full six-year term.