US Justice Dept charges Sen. Menendez with criminal corruption

The FBI and Justice Department are preparing to bring criminal corruption charges against New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, a Democrat, alleging he used his office to promote business interests of a Democratic donor and friend in exchange for gifts. The senator has called the probe a “smear campaign” and denies the charges. Menendez has drawn the Obama administration’s ire by his vocal opposition on two of its major foreign policy issues – Cuba and direct diplomacy with Iran on the country’s nuclear program, demanding that the senate be permitted to review any deals contracted.

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