Democrat Senator abandons party in a bombshell defection

Bob Menendez

The Left thought they only had to worry about Joe Manchin jumping ship. But now another has decided to take the plunge.

And a Democrat Senator abandons party in a bombshell defection.

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), who has been indicted, turned in his campaign papers to state elections officials on Monday as he prepares to run for reelection as an independent.

“Today, I submitted well above the threshold of signatures required to run for re-election,” the embattled New Jersey Democrat wrote in a Facebook post formally announcing his third-party bid as he stands trial on federal corruption charges.

“The people of this great state deserve a leader in Washington with a proven track record of fighting tooth and nail to deliver results, and I intend to keep doing so as an independent Democrat,” he added.

The “Menendez for Senate” campaign submitted 2,465 signatures to the New Jersey Division of Elections, much exceeding the required 800 signatures on the petition for ballot access.

“It displeases me to have to go this route, thanks to overzealous prosecutors, but I will do what must be done to continue to uphold my oath of office for my constituents,” Menendez said.

‘Gold Bar Bob’ Menendez’s son Rob is battling for his political life, as his father fights to keep out of jail.

The six-term senator also expressed confidence that he will be found not guilty during the trial.

“Despite what is portrayed in the press, my innocence continues to be laid out in court,” he wrote.

“As I have said before; I have committed no crime. I am more confident than ever that New Jerseyans and the rest of the American public will see me exonerated of what I am being accused of, and I will be re-elected to the Senate once again.”

Menendez, 70, chose not to participate in the June 4 Democratic primary, which is projected to be won by progressive Rep. Andy Kim (D-NJ).

Polls show that if Menendez is able to qualify, his support will reduce Kim’s lead over the Republican nominee in a three-way contest.

Mendham Borough Mayor Christine Serrano Glassner and developer Curtis Bashaw are among the Republican candidates vying for the nomination in Tuesday’s primary.

Menendez is currently on trial in Manhattan federal court for allegedly receiving bribes totaling over $600,000 in cash and gold bars in exchange for favors from three rich New Jersey businessmen.

He has also been accused of operating as a foreign agent while leading the influential Senate Foreign Relations Committee, from which he has since resigned, to help the governments of Egypt and Qatar.

Menendez has pled not guilty to the allegations and claimed innocence, and his attorneys have attempted to argue that his wife and co-defendant Nadine inherited the gold bars from her Lebanese relatives and stowed them at the couple’s house without his knowledge.

“I look forward to putting these accusations behind me and getting back to work for my constituents,” Menendez said Monday.

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