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Embattled New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob ‘Gold Bar’ Menendez said in a video statement Thursday that he will not run in his state’s Democratic primary but kept the door open to running for reelection as an independent this fall. 

Menendez and his wife Nadine are facing charges related to an alleged bribery scheme involving the Qatari and Egyptian governments. 

Already, Democrats Tammy Murphy, the wife of New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, and Rep. Andy Kim are vying for Menendez’s Senate seat, with voters heading to the polls in November to decide the next occupant.

‘Unfortunately the present accusations I am facing of which I am innocent and will prove so, will not allow me to have that type of dialog and debate with political opponents that have already made it the cornerstone of their campaign,’ Menendez said in a video posted to his X account

‘Therefore I will not file for the Democratic primary this June,’ he said. ‘I am hopeful that my exoneration will take place this summer and allow me to pursue my candidacy as an independent Democrat in the general election.’ 

‘Gold Bar’ Bob Menendez reveals he will NOT run in the Democratic primary as he faces multitude of corruption charges but could still seek reelection as an independent

Embattled New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob ‘Gold Bar’ Menendez said in a video statement Thursday that he will not run in his state’s Democratic primary but kept the door open to running for reelection as an independent this fall

Democratic Senator Bob Menendez and his wife Nadine are seeking separate trials on bribery charges they each face in a New York court

Democratic Senator Bob Menendez and his wife Nadine are seeking separate trials on bribery charges they each face in a New York court

He previously refused to resign from Congress as the scandal mounted. 

Polling from late January showed that the incumbent had a tough road ahead of him if he decided to pursue the Democratic nomination for his seat, which he’s held since 2006. 

A Fairleigh Dickinson University survey showed Kim with 32 percent of the likely Democratic vote and Murphy with 20 percent. 

Menendez was only garnering 9 percent support at the time. 

In September, Menendez and his wife Nadine were charged separately in a scheme where they aided three New Jersey businessmen in return for cash, gold bars and a luxury car. 

Authorities who searched the Menendez home found more than $100,000 worth ofl gold bars in the residence, as well as more than $480,000 in cash, which was hidden away in closets, amongst clothing and in a safe, prosecutors said.   

Prosecutors also said that Menendez had Googled the value of a ‘kilo of gold.’ 

Menendez, his wife and the three business associates have all pleaded not guilty. 

Amid the charges, Menendez was forced to give up his position as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. 

It’s unlikely due to New Jersey’s heavily Democratic makeup that the Democrats would lose the seat in the fall, though it becomes more possible if Menendez launches an independent run, as he could play the role of spoiler. 





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