A super PAC run by Republican operatives with close ties to former Gov. Chris Christie have begun airing a TV ad attacking Democratic U.S. Senator Bob Menendez.
The Integrity NJ ad, “Firsts,” focuses on Menendez’s corruption indictment. His trial ended in a hung jury after only two of thirteen jurors voted to convict the two-term Senator.
“Bob Menendez doesn’t deserve a return trip to Washington, D.C. He has chosen to serve himself and the interests of his wealthy donors above those of New Jersey. Even his own colleagues in the US Senate, both Democrats and Republicans, ‘severely admonished’ him for his actions. New Jersey deserves better,” said Integrity NJ executive director Pete Sheridan. “Integrity NJ will be aggressively making the case over the next nearly 100 days that New Jersey needs a Senator we can be proud of.”
Integrity NJ has also launched a new website, www.shamelesslycorruptmenendez.com.
The super PAC is run by Phil Cox and Pete Sheridan, both of whom have close ties to Christie.
Cox, the group’s chairman and senior advisor, was executive director of the Republican Governors Association when Christie was chairman of the group. He also headed America Leads, a super PAC founded to back Christie’s 2016 presidential run.
Sheridan, formerly the executive director of the New Jersey GOP, worked on both of Christie’s gubernatorial campaigns and served on Christie’s transition out of the governorship. Sheridan is the PAC’s executive director.
The Republican candidate, pharmaceutical company executive Bob Hugin, has close ties to Christie. He contributed $250,000 to Christie’s super PAC, $2,700 to Christie’s presidential campaign and $5,000 to the Leadership Matters for America PAC.
“With every sad attack, Bob Hugin just shows he is a partisan Republican,” said Steve Sandberg, a spokesman for the Menendez campaign. “Having a Christie-led SuperPAC trying to rescue his campaign shows that Bob Hugin has nothing positive to offer to New Jersey.”
The text of the ad: New Jersey firsts. The first boardwalk. The first World Series broadcast. Even the first motion picture. And the first Senator to face a bribery trial in almost forty years? Senator Bob Menendez. Prosecuted for conspiracy, fraud and bribery.