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The Quiet Rise of Bob Menendez

Thursday, April 10, 2014

New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez has quickly become one of the most prominent Democrats on Capitol Hill. The two-term Senator became chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last year after an unusual wave of turnover among top Democrats.  That has put Menendez in a high-profile position with crises in Ukraine, Syria and Afghanistan in the headlines. In less than a decade, the Hudson County Democrat has become one of the most powerful Senators on Capitol Hill.

Yet, in spite of his relatively rapid rise, the Senator has been dogged by accusations of scandal throughout his career. And though he's never been indicted or officially charged, ethical questions continue to surround Menendez.

But Herb Jackson, Washington correspondent for The Record, says don't count on that stopping Menendez's ascent up the Democratic leadership ladder.

Several Democrats are positioning themselves to eventually succeed Harry Reid, but Jackson says Menendez's move might be outside Congress.

"Senator Menendez was also a very active supporter of Hillary Clinton in 2008," said Jackson. "Maybe if she wins, he would go to her administration."

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Herb Jackson

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