In the never ending fantasy of Trump collusion with Russia, it’s easy for alt-left reporters to ignore the real news about government corruption. Although this usually means that the alphabet news companies are covering up for Clinton, Obama, and other Soros neophytes, in this case, they’re disregarding the implications that New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez’s upcoming trial will have on the balance of congressional power.
The U.S. Senate has bilaterally passed a resolution that authorizes Senators and staff members to participate in Menendez’s September criminal proceeding. Essentially, anyone who works in that capacity can be subpoenaed by either the prosecution or the defense to testify in the case. The late night resolution also ensures that Senate legal representation is provided for witnesses.
The official go-ahead to testify is a fairly standard practice. Unfortunately, democrat corruption, bribery, and theft is also a standard practice. The Menendez trial has a unique distinction because he has actually being caught and is facing prosecution. He’s been fighting the inevitable for more than two years.
Achieving the lofty Senate position in 2006, Menendez was serving as the Chair of the Committee on Foreign Relations when a federal indictment in 2015 caused him to step down.
Majority Leader McConnell introduced the resolution last night, backed by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, but the measure doesn’t list the persons who’ve been ordered to testify.
McConnell inserted a statement in the congressional record that explained, “This resolution would authorize Senate individuals called to appear to testify and produce documents in this case and related proceedings, except concerning matters for which a privilege is asserted.”
“It would also authorize the Senate Legal Counsel to represent individuals called to testify at trial as fact witnesses regarding their performance of official Senate responsibilities,” he said.
Menendez, who has adamantly denied the charges, is facing 14 counts of bribery and corruption. In March, the Supreme Court dismissed his dubious pretrial challenge without bothering to hear it.
Menendez is accused of accepting almost $1 million from Dr. Salomon Melgen, a Florida eye doctor and major democrat donor. He allegedly gave funds to Menendez in exchange for visas and help with a Medicare investigation.
Melgen needed all the help he could get from the New jersey senator. The doctor was convicted in April on more than 60 counts of fraud against the government agency. Melgen faces up to 20 years in prison for bilking taxpayers of over $20 million, which for the 62-year-old doctor could be a life sentence.
Melgen allegedly transferred funds and paid for expensive trips for the New Jersey lawmaker. Prosecutors say that the trips were used to help get visas for Melgen’s Russian mistresses. The Florida-based ophthalmologist also sent campaign “donations” to Menendez for his intervention with Medicare officials who were investigating his practice.
Melgen is named as a co-defendant with Menendez in the federal bribery charges, but before he’s sentenced next week, he could have a major impact on Menendez. If federal prosecutors offer him a deal to become a witness, he may be inclined to take it, which would nail the lid on the coffin of Menendez’s political career and freedom.
Moreover, if Menendez is removed from office, Governor Chris Christie would be in the rare position of appointing a replacement senator. If that happened, there’s a chance that republicans could strengthen their 52-48 lead in the senate, at least temporarily.
The proceedings are set to begin on September 6, despite Menendez’s numerous appeals and attempts to prevent it. The Senator is sticking by his flat denials. When his longtime friend was convicted, he continued to look out only for himself, “That case has nothing to do with my case,” Menendez told reporters after the Melgen verdict. “It was about the procedures and practices of his office,” he added.
So, along with allegedly engaging in corrupt bribery while a representative of the United States, Menendez is also a selfish, fair-weather friend.
Despite the upcoming trial and the possibility of Senators and staff members testifying against him, Menendez continues to raise reelection funds. He currently has more than $2.7 million according to the FEC. However, a recent New jersey poll showed that only 31 percent of voters think that he should keep his Senate seat.
Hopefully, the trial will remove at least one unethical, immoral politician from Washington. Now that the Senate has given the green light for testimony, it will be interesting to see what the September hearing will disclose.