As U.S. Senator Bob Menendez prepares to formally launch his bid for re-election today, Republican State Chairman Douglas Steinhardt is making the case for voters to reject the two-term senator.
“New Jersey’s over 5 million registered voters will finally have a chance to render their verdict on Senator Bob Menendez’s record,” said Steinhardt. “He’s a career politician who has spent more time staying one step ahead of the law than he has in step with his New Jersey constituents.”
Steinhardt says New Jersey needs a senator who will “use his influence to change New Jersey’s abysmal distinction as the 50th State out of 50 for sending more federal tax dollars out of State than it gets back in federal benefits, rather than using that influence to help his friends and donors bilk taxpayers out of hundreds of millions of dollars in Medicare funds.”
That was as a clear shot at longtime Menendez friend and onetime co-defendant Salomon Melgen, who was recently sentenced to 17 years in prison after his conviction on Medicare fraud charges in Florida. Corruption charges against Menendez and Melgen were dismissed earlier this year after a jury failed to reach a verdict in a 2017 trial.
“Public polling suggests that a jury of Senator Menendez’s constituents aren’t so sure about his close relationship and dealing with his self-proclaimed best friend and convicted felon Solomon Melgen. The man who showered Menendez with vacations, gifts and campaign contributions defrauded seniors and will likely spend the rest of his life in prison for it, yet Menendez still stands by his side,” said Steinhardt. “A recent Rutgers poll showed a majority of New Jersey wanted a new Senator and a recent Quinnipiac poll showed Menendez’s favorability rating is upside down among independent voters in the state. We have a real shot at putting a qualified Republican in that Senate seat.”
But Menendez’s chief political advisor, Michael Soliman, says that Steinhardt’s candidate, former pharmaceutical company CEO Bob Hugin, lacks the standing to criticize anyone.
“Bob Hugin is a greedy CEO who became a multi-millionaire by jacking up prices again and again on medicine that cancer patients depend upon,” Soliman said. “He led a company that avoided paying taxes in America by parking billions overseas. It’s no wonder patient advocates call Bob Hugin ruthless and a robber baron.”