Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), who faces a competitive re-election race next year, on Tuesday became the fourth vulnerable Senate Democrat and the seventh Senate Democrat overall to call for embattled Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) to resign.
“The well-documented political corruption charges are a violation of the public trust, and Senator Menendez should resign,” Rosen said in a statement. “While he is entitled to due process and a fair trial, this is a distraction that undermines the bipartisan work we need to do in the Senate for the American people.”
It would have been awkward for Rosen to stay quiet about the serious allegations facing Menendez considering she introduced the “No Corruption Act” in March, which would bar members of Congress from collecting taxpayer-funded pensions if they are convicted of felonies related to their official duties.
She co-sponsored the bill, which passed the Senate unanimously in July, with Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.).
“For too long, loopholes have made it possible for corrupt Washington politicians convicted of felonies to continue collecting taxpayer-funded pensions — that’s unacceptable,” she said at the time.
If Menendez, who was indicted Friday on bribery, fraud and extortion charges, is convicted, Rosen’s and Scott’s bill to strip convicted officeholders of their pensions will get fresh attention.
Three other senators facing tough races next year have called on Menendez to step down: Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.).
Montanans for Tester and Bob Casey for Senate, Tester’s and Casey’s campaigns, told The Hill Tuesday that they would each refund the $10,000 donations they collected from Menendez’s political action committee (PAC) this cycle.