Image: Political reality, tabloid fodder mix in Sen. Menendez trial
New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez and Dominican Republic born ophthalmologist Dr. Salomon Melgen were indicted on public corruption and bribery charges on April 1, 2015. Only two weeks later on April 15, Melgen was also indicted on Medicare fraud charges. At the center of the corruption trial is the long-standing mutually-beneficial relationship between Menendez and Melgen.
Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez is the first United States senator on trial for corruption in 36 years and faces six counts of bribery, three counts of honest services fraud, one count of conspiracy, one count of interstate travel to carry out bribery, and one count of making false statements on his congressional financial disclosures to conceal the criminal activity. Melgen faces the same charges, except for the charge related to congressional financial disclosures.
If Menendez is convicted and forced out of office before January, current New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie would be responsible for picking his replacement – likely meaning another temporary GOP vote from a state which has not elected a Republican Senator since 1972.