There is no state in the union like New Jersey. The Garden State possesses a storied history of diversity, innovation, and eccentricity. There is perhaps no better place in the United States to enjoy a wide range of tasty cuisine, experience both rural and urban American culture in such a small area and enjoy different aspects of natural geography in a confined space. “Jersey”, as natives call it, may be one of the smallest states in the union, but it is second to none when it comes to having a “slice of everything” in a singular compact area, making it one of the most unique places in America. Unfortunately for citizens of the third state to join the union, one thing the state has not experienced a shortage of over the years is rampant political corruption at every level of government.
A long-serving federal senator from New Jersey now faces another federal investigation. Senator Robert Menendez, who has served as one of the state’s senators in D.C. since 2006 is under investigation for his connections to an Egyptian company. This is not Menendez’s first rodeo; in 2017 he stood trial on charges of bribery in correlation with a longtime prominent political donor, but the case ended in a mistrial. New Jersey is a deep blue state when it comes to federal politics; in 2018 after being under scrutiny for his poor ethical record in service, he beat back a strongly funded challenger in the form of a well-known state level Republican Mr. Bob Hugin. Menendez won handily by over 9 percentage points despite millions of dollars being spent on attack ads across the state.
It is worth noting, though, that Menendez has lower approval ratings than in previous years. 60 percent of constituents believe the investigation damages the senator’s ability to serve the state. Menendez currently chairs the senate’s foreign relations committee and enjoys significant influence over foreign policy discussions.