You can be forgiven for being unaware that a sitting US Senator is currently standing trial, and even for being unaware of what the political affiliation of said Senator might be.
There has been a relative dearth of stories concerning the trial of Robert Menendez and predictably many of the stories that have managed to make it to publication have failed to remark upon Menendez’s political relationships.
White House advisor Kellyanne Conway incurred the wraith of left wing political pundits (something not hard to do and also something with which she is sadly familiar) for her claim that the New York Times left off Menendez’s party identification in one of the few articles that actually referenced his trial. Despite liberal tears, anger and angst resulting in claims that Conway lied about the article in question, she was in fact proven correct (by the Associated Press no less). As you might well imagine those vilifying her didn’t apologize for their error in accusing her anywhere nearly as quickly as they condemned her (that is those that bothered apologizing at all).
The identification mishaps didn’t end there, even the website @NBCnews.com incorrectly identified Menendez as a Republican which perhaps was wishful thinking on the part of the left leaning network.
So what exactly is Menendez on trial for? According to Fox News in their story about “The Senator Bob Menendez corruption and Bribery Trial – What to Know” http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/09/06/sen-bob-menendez-corruption-and-bribery-trial-what-to-know.html
Menendez, 63, is accused of accepting a plethora of campaign donations, gifts and vacations from Salomon Melgen, a Florida eye doctor. In return, Menendez allegedly used his position to lobby on behalf of Melgen’s business interests, according to prosecutors.
The article goes on to explain that kickbacks to Menendez for his assistance were of the normal Democratic boodle variety
Melgen also paid for Menendez and his girlfriend to stay for three nights at a Parisian hotel where rooms typically cost about $1,500 per night and allowed the senator the use of his private jet, according to prosecutors.
Of course as Menendez’s attorneys are quick to point out, these accusations of corruption are because of racism against Hispanics (or something).
But perhaps the best explanation for the Democrats trepidation concerning this trial isn’t just the fact that Menendez is potentially going away (and further tipping the scales in the Senate in favor of the GOP) but that other Democratic misdeeds and Democratic miscreants will be dragged into the light eroding the parties message (if they still have one beyond “We hate Trump”) even more.
This appears to be happening already despite the fact that the trial is still in the early stages. The Washington Times reports http://m.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/sep/4/robert-menendez-trial-puts-other-democrats-at-lega/ that former Senator Harry Reid (who was also the one time leader of the Senate) has been exposed for his efforts in trying to stop a federal probe of Senator Menendez friend Melgen.
The Times article goes on to say:
“Who knows who else will be implicated, but it’s clear now that the corruption extended beyond Menendez’s office,” said Michael Ahrens, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee. “It’s just as stunning that no Senate Democrat has said Menendez should resign immediately if convicted.”
Perhaps it is because Senate Democrats are expending so much energy and effort in a futile attempt to get President Trump impeached (for daring to defeat their heroine Hillary Clinton) that they have little energy left to clean out their own House, or Senate for that matter