Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez, “sold his office for a lifestyle he couldn’t afford,” federal prosecutors testified Wednesday in an opening statement in the Democrat’s corruption trial.
Another Clinton ally and friend, Democrat Menendez from New Jersey is officially indicted on 14 counts including bribery, conspiracy, and lying!
Justice Department attorney Peter Koski said Menendez later lied about the trips he recieved from a wealthy Florida doctor seeking political influence on Senate disclosure forms.
Menendez has done everything in the book to keep from being indicted, including wasting the Supreme Court’s time on a personal legal matter!
The Senator began his trial on Sept. 6, facing a potential criminal conviction after federal prosecutors charged him with 14 counts including conspiracy to commit bribery.
The Justice Department’s probe alleges that Salomon Melgen, a Florida ophthalmologist and political donor, bribed Menendez with gifts.
NBC News reports:
Menendez is charged along with Florida ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen with multiple fraud and bribery charges. Both have pleaded not guilty.
Koski described Menendez pressuring government officials to help Melgen with securing visas for his foreign girlfriends, a lucrative port security contract in the Dominican Republic and a multimillion-dollar Medicare dispute.
Defense attorneys were scheduled to give their opening statements later Wednesday. Opening statements were delayed to allow for the selection of more jurors, while the judge and defense butted heads from the start.
An attorney for the New Jersey Democrat accused the judge Wednesday of disparaging Menendez in his opinion denying Menendez’s motion to postpone the trial on days of important Senate votes.
U.S. District Judge William Walls continually interrupted to deny the allegation.
Melgen was convicted In April on separate charges in Florida of 67 counts of Medicare fraud. He is due to be sentenced for those crimes on Aug. 11.
The indictment also states that Menendez tried to get Harry Reid, the former senate majority leader from Nevada, and Tom Harkin, a former senator from Iowa who chaired the health committee, involved in applying that pressure.
The Supreme Court rejected a Menendez petition that argued a Philadelphia appeals court misinterpreted the Constitution’s “speech or debate” clause. The clause bars the executive and judicial branches from questioning a member of Congress about legislative activity.
Fellow senators, along with current and former staffers, have received the official go-ahead from the Senate to testify at the Federal trial.
Menendez served in the Senate since 2006. He stepped down from his position as Senate Chair of the Committee on Foreign Relations after his 2015 federal corruption indictment. He has pleaded not guilty to all the charges. He’s up for re-election next year.
It is possible that Menendez might be forced to step down. Fox News reports:
The Garden State senior senator maintains his innocence in the federal bribery case. The delays in the case, however, have complicated matters politically, observers note — creating a scenario where the state’s Republican governor could appoint a successor if the incumbent is forced to step down.
According to New Jersey state law, if Menendez should step down less than 70 days before the next election, the governor “may make a temporary appointment of a senator of the United States.”
The Democrats are up to their ears in scandal. Should be an interesting year!
Buh, Bye! Senator Menendez, you liar!
Sign up to get alerts from Joe!