An editor of mine once said that “if someone calls you an ass, blow it off as one person’s opinion. But if everyone around you does, then you’d better start shopping for a saddle.”
Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., has been indicted on bribery charges; so has his wife, Nadine. The ranks of fellow Senate Democrats calling for him to resign has swelled to more than 30.
You know, he ought to just quit. Go home and get ready for a trial that likely is going to send this guy to prison.
It’s instructive to note two other points about Menendez’s current plight. One is that the Republican caucus in Congress has been silent. Hmm. Why is that? Oh, wait! The longer Menendez sits in the Senate, the less time the media will spend looking at assorted scandals and criminal indictments leveled against the former POTUS … who happens to be a Republican.
The other is Menendez was tried once before on corruption charges. His trial ended with a hung jury, meaning that prosecutors couldn’t get all jurors to convict him. So, the case was dismissed. It could have been re-tried. However, a hung jury doesn’t imply innocence in that earlier corruption scandal.
Had the Senate Democratic caucus shown any guts, it would have expelled Menendez from the Senate after the first criminal trial. But they are gutless wonders. They brought him back to the fold and allowed him to function as if nothing had happened.
Now comes the latest criminal indictment alleging that the Menendezes had gold bars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars stashed away along with envelopes stuffed with cash.
This indictment looks serious enough for Menendez to just walk away now and defend himself in court. Yes, he is entitled to the presumption of innocence. However, Menendez is not entitled to remain in the U.S. Senate.