It is discouraging to the people of the United States to have to consider the possibility of some deep-seated corruption within the government. Nevertheless, they must. In this case, a liberal US senator was caught doing something that would leave the founding fathers appalled.
Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) is in the middle of a trial where he is charged with bribery. The conditions around his crimes are very specific and paint quite a disturbing picture of the still-sitting senator. According to The Federalist, prosecutors are accusing Menendez of accepting bribes from an eye doctor named Salomon Melgen. In exchange, Menendez lobbied for political favors to get Melgen out of legal trouble.
If Menendez is found guilty of the crimes with which he is charged, he is likely to be forced to step down from his position as senator. This would open the door for the Republican Governor, Chris Christie, to choose who would replace him — which could shake up the balance in the US Senate.
The situation reeks of corruption considering Melgen was convicted of Medicare fraud to the tune of 8.9 million dollars. According to evidence and the testimony, Menendez was working tirelessly to get Meglen off the hook.
In exchange for helping Melgen with his problem, Menedez received lavish paid vacations and private plane rides. The icing on the cake was $750,000 in campaign contributions from the Florida eye doctor.
This is much more than a mere coincidence. The evidence is piling up on the two co-conspirators as well, making it even more obvious that something just isn’t right.
On Monday, it was discovered that Menendez had attempted to change the way the rules work at the CMS in order to allow his friend some more leniency. Johnathan Blum, a former principal deputy, testified that Menendez wanted to make rules that would “relieve or forgive or lessen” Melgen’s over-payment, according to CNN.
Blum admitted that after he told Menendez he would not change the rules to suit his friend, Menendez became “hostile,” and hung up on Blum. “The Senator is from New Jersey. The physician is based in Florida. I pressed our staff several times on the connection between the senator and Dr. Melgen,” Blum told Politico.
The principal deputy of CMS recalled another time when he met with then-Senate Majority leader Harry Reid, Menendez, and former Health & Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Blum testified that the subject of bending the rules came up again and that Menendez became angry when his attempt was foiled again.
Now, CMS head Marilyn Tavenner is set to testify. Sebelius and Reid are also set to come in as soon as possible to talk about the seemingly obvious crimes that were committed.
A sitting senator is on trial for bribery. Do you suspect this is the tip of the iceberg?
New Jersey residents are not happy with their senator either. Approximately 84 percent think that he needs to resign from his position. It is not surprising that they feel this way, particularly because of how corrupt this situation appears.
Democrats around the country are refusing to talk about this case, and the media has been silent on the subject. If the suspects were part of the GOP, there would be a constant stream of media coverage exploring conspiracies born of false narrative and fiction.
This raises the question: Is this corruption of the party as a whole, or another plain old political hack?