Pennsylvania Democrat U.S. Sen. John Fetterman called on Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., to resign following a federal indictment.
Menendez is being charged with conspiracy to commit bribery, conspiracy to commit honest services fraud, and conspiracy to commit extortion under color of an official right.
“Senator Menendez should resign. 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,” Fetterman said in a statement on Saturday.
The New Jersey Democrat thus far has pushed back on calls for his resignation, which include his home state’s governor, Democrat Phil Murphy.
NEW JERSEY GOV. PHIL MURPHY CALLS ON SEN. MENENDEZ TO RESIGN FOLLOWING INDICTMENT
Sens. John Fetterman (L) and Bob Menendez (Bill Clark/Getty Images and Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
“Those who believe in justice believe in innocence until proven guilty. 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 same record of success these very same leaders have lauded all along. It is not lost on me how quickly some are rushing to judge a Latino and push him out of his seat. I am not going anywhere,” Menendez said on Saturday.
The senator earlier said that prosecutors misrepresented the normal work of a Congressional office” and are attempting to “dig my political grave.”
“The excesses of these prosecutors is apparent. They have misrepresented the normal work of a Congressional office. On top of that, not content with making false claims against me, they have attacked my wife for the longstanding friendships she had before she and I even met,” Menendez said.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams announced the indictment Friday morning at a press conference.
“Today, I’m announcing that my office has obtained a three count indictment charging Senator Robert Menendez, his wife, Nadine Menendez, and three New Jersey businessmen, Wael Hana, Jose Uribe and Fred Daibes for bribery offenses,” U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said at a press conference on Friday morning.
DEMOCRATIC SEN. BOB MENENDEZ FACING INDICTMENT ON BRIBERY CHARGES
UNITED STATES – SEPTEMBER 12: Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., is seen in the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, September 12, 2023. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images) (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
According to the indictment, the couple accepted “hundreds of thousands of dollars of bribes in exchange for using Menendez’s power and influence as a senator to seek to protect and enrich Hana, Uribe, and Daibes and to benefit the Arab Republic of Egypt.”
Menendez allegedly gave sensitive U.S. government information to Hana, who’s an Egyptian-American businessman, who “secretly aided the Government of Egypt.”
DEMOCRATIC SEN. BOB MENENDEZ STEPS DOWN ‘TEMPORARILY’ AS CHAIRMAN OF SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE
An evidence photo shows gold bars that were gifted by Fred Daibes and found in Democratic New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez and Nadine Menendez’s home. A federal indictment was unsealed on Friday, September 22, 2023, charging Senator Menendez and his wife – along with three New Jersey businessmen – with bribery offenses relating to alleged efforts to utilize his political position to aid the Arab Republic of Egypt. (United States District Court )
The alleged bribes included gold, cash, payments toward a mortgage, compensation for a low-or-no-show job, a luxury car, and “other things of value.”
Menendez had disclosed his family accepted gold bars in 2020.
Menendez also allegedly pressured an official at the Department of Agriculture with the goal of protecting a business monopoly granted to Hana by the Egyptian government.
Menendez is pictured with his wife Nadine in 2019 with businessman Jose Uribe, who was also charged Friday, during a celebratory dinner. (United States District Court for the Southern District of New York)
In return, Hana allegedly kicked back profits from the monopoly to Menendez, the indictment states.
Fox News Digital’s Chris Pandolfo contributed to this report.
Adam Sabes is a writer for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to [email protected] and on Twitter @asabes10.