Philadelphia Inquirer Spells It Out For Accused Sen. Bob Menendez

The Philadelphia Inquirer has joined the growing chorus of calls for Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.Y.) to step down following his indictment on bribery charges.

Menendez “is entitled to the presumption of innocence” but “should not be entitled to continue to serve in the United States Senate,” the newspaper’s editorial board wrote in a piece published Tuesday.

“The cloud hanging over the Garden State’s senior senator will inevitably distract from his ability to put his constituents first,” the board warned. “He should step down and focus his energy on mounting a credible defense.”

The evidence against Menendez is “damning,” it continued, saying New Jersey voters “deserve better than a twice-indicted senator.” Jurors failed to reach a verdict in a 2017 trial centered on other allegations.

The editorial boards of the Boston Globe and New York Post similarly called for Menendez to quit.

“Wake up, Bob: You’re toast,” wrote the Post’s demand.

Multiple high-profile Democratic senators have called on Menendez to resign after he was indicted Friday, including Sens. John Fetterman (Pa.), Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), Cory Booker (N.J.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Mark Kelly (Ariz.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) and Raphael Warnock (Ga.).

Menendez has stepped down as chair of the Foreign Relations Committee but has vowed to stay in the Senate and contest the charges. He appeared in court on Wednesday morning.