WASHINGTON (KDKA) - Earlier this week, Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey along with his wife were indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of bribery.
The indictment comes after a yearslong investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice looking into public corruption.
The 69-year-old senator and his wife, Nadine Menendez, are facing one count of conspiracy to commit bribery, conspiracy to commit honest services fraud, and conspiracy to commit extortion under color of official right.
Also named in the indictment are three New Jersey businessmen, Wael Hana, Jose Uribe, and Fred Daibes.
Despite the charges, Sen. Menedez has indicated he does not plan to resign.
"I intend to continue to fight for the people of New Jersey with the same success I've had for the past five decades," he said.
This is the second time in 10 years he has been facing corruption charges as in 2015 he was indicted on similar charges but the case ultimately ended in a mistrial.
Several elected officials in both New Jersey and Washington have called on Sen. Menendez to step down, and that includes one of Pennsylvania's Democratic Senators, John Fetterman.
Sen. Fetterman released a statement on Saturday afternoon, calling for Sen. Menendez's resignation.
"Senator Menendez should resign," Fetterman's statement read. "He's entitled to the presumption of innocence under our system, but he is not entitled to continue to wield influence over national policy, especially given the serious and specific nature of the allegations. I hope he chooses an honorable exit and focuses on his trial."
Menendez has called the accusations baseless but due to the Senate Democratic Caucus rules, he has agreed to step down as the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
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