New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez is facing a retrial on corruption charges just two months after a jury deadlocked and a mistrial was declared in his first trial. Menendez’ co-defendant Salomon Melgen, a rich, eye doctor from Florida, was accused of providing Menendez with flights on private jets, expensive vacations and political contributions worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. In exchange, the senator would allegedly try to persuade federal officials to help Melgen’s financial interests in a $9 million disputed Medicare billing and a contract for port security in the Dominican Republic. Menendez is also accused of receiving gifts for helping get tourist visas for Melgen’s foreign girlfriends and one of their sisters.
According to Politico, DOJ spokesman Wyn Hornbuckle said in a statement, “The conduct alleged in the indictment is serious and warrants retrial before a jury of citizens in the District of New Jersey.” He would also add, “The decision to retry this case was made based on the facts and the law, following a careful review. The charges contained in an indictment are merely accusations, and defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.” Senator Menendez is up for reelection this November. He is planning to run for reelection and his retrial could jeopardize a normally Democratic seat when the Democrats are already facing a very unfriendly Senate map this fall. The question now is, should Senator Menendez be retried on corruption charges?
NJ.com: Sen. Menendez to Be Retried on Bribery, Corruption Charges
Should Senator Menendez be retried on corruption charges? Should he be retried because there was no conclusive decision reached in the first trial? Or, would a retrial be a waste of taxpayer money?