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HomeLatest NewsSenate Democrats urge Bob Menendez of New Jersey to step down

Senate Democrats urge Bob Menendez of New Jersey to step down

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Senator Bob Menendez, the New Jersey Democrat who is currently under federal indictment for corruption-related offenses, is facing growing pressure to step down from his position. Senator Cory Booker, also from New Jersey, called for Menendez’s resignation on Tuesday, joining a growing list of Senate Democrats who have made the same demand. Menendez’s dwindling list of allies in Washington, DC, and New Jersey is further damaging his political future. The charges against Menendez come at a crucial time for the Senate Democratic majority, which is already facing an uphill battle in the 2024 elections to retain control of the chamber. Menendez’s indictment could potentially give Republicans an advantage, especially if he runs for reelection while under indictment.

Booker’s decision to join other Senate Democrats in calling for Menendez’s resignation has made him the most prominent Senate Democrat to take such a stance, even among those who are also facing tough reelection races next year. By Tuesday evening, more than half of the Democratic Senate caucus had called for Menendez’s resignation. The growing pressure on Menendez comes as Democratic leaders are mostly adopting a wait-and-see approach. However, Senator Gary Peters, the chair of the party’s campaign arm, has called on Menendez to resign. Menendez’s reelection prospects are uncertain, particularly if the charges against him continue to undermine public faith in his ability to serve as senator.

Despite the calls for his resignation, Menendez remains defiant and maintains his innocence. He refused to say whether he will run for reelection and accused those calling for his resignation of “rushing to judgment” for political reasons. Menendez has been charged with accepting bribes in exchange for his influence, including payments in the form of gold, cash, and a luxury vehicle. His previous bribery and corruption charges in 2015 were dismissed. Menendez’s wife, Nadine Arslanian Menendez, also denies any wrongdoing and intends to fight the federal indictment. There are potential primary challengers waiting in the wings, including Representative Andy Kim and Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla, who are considering challenging Menendez or his son, Rob Menendez, in upcoming Democratic primary races.

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