Menendez Seems in Good Shape to Win a Third Term

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New Jersey Democrat Bob Menendez seems in good shape to win a third term despite a harsh rebuke from fellow senators.

WASHINGTON (AP) — New Jersey Democrat Bob Menendez seems in good shape to win a third term despite a harsh rebuke from fellow senators who say he violated chamber rules and federal law, according to political analysts and party colleagues.

The Senate ethics committee found that Menendez repeatedly accepted gifts of significant value, failed to report them and advanced the personal and business interests of the donor who provided the gifts.

The allegations were hardly new to most New Jersey voters. Menendez’s federal bribery trial last fall centered on those same accusations. It ended with a hung jury; prosecutors decided not to retry the case.

Whatever negatives were generated from the trial appear to be more than offset by the fact he has a “D” next to his name in the Democratic stronghold, said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute in New Jersey.

Monmouth’s polling this month showed Menendez with a 53 to 32 percent advantage over his likely Republican challenger in November, former Celgene executive Bob Hugin.

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