Apoplectic progressives react to MoveOn’s nod to Robert Menendez Jr.

New Jersey progressive Democrats and other government reform champions are furious that MoveOn.org is considering an endorsement for Robert Menendez Jr.—the unqualified son of corrupt US Senator Robert Menendez—who was plucked from obscurity to replace Rep. Albio Sires in Congress.

Lisa McCormick, who was the only New Jersey Democrat to challenge the elder Menendez in his 2018 primary election, is calling on progressive activists to speak out against the potential endorsement because the young contender “has accepted dirty campaign money, pledged to back a pro-war agenda and represents everything MoveOn.org is against.”

MoveOn—a leftwing activist group—stood firm against Trump’s lies and conspiracy theories, rolled out a national television ad campaign accusing President George W. Bush of “a betrayal of trust,” set off a political firestorm by attacking the top U.S. commander in Iraq, and

MoveOn’s national staff has approved his endorsement but the final decision on whether to endorse is up to MoveOn members, and McCormick is urging them to register their disapproval.

“Rob Menendez Jr. has accepted campaign cash from every greedy, dirty lobbyist or corporate donor from BRG PAC, which is associated with former Republican National Committee Chairman and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, to corporate crooks like insurance companies and big pharmaceutical firms,” said McCormick.

A large portion of Rob Menendez Jr.’s campaign funding has come from pro-war groups that have defended human rights abuses such as DMFI PAC, AIPAC, and Pro-Israel America, which are groups that endorsed as many Republicans as Democrats, even most of the Sedition Caucus.

amy degise rob menendez jr laugh about hit-n-run.
Robert Menendez, Jr. hugs Amy DeGise as they share a laugh at campaign headquarters. The inset shows Andy Black fly through the air dusing the hit-n-run that spawned calls for DeGise’s resignation. Menendez has not joined in demands for his political ally to resign.

Jersey City Councilwoman Amy DeGise, filed legal challenges that knocked two Democrats off the ballot —law professor Eugene Mazo and North Bergen businessman Brian Varella—after they filed petitions to seek the Democratic nomination in New Jersey’s 8th Congressional District, has since earned scorn after she was involved in an apparent hit-and-run incident but Menendez has not joined in demands for her resignation.

Despite his criminal conduct, Senator Menendez remains a powerful and influential figure in Hudson County and New Jersey politics.

The U.S. Senator and Florida ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen were indicted on April 1, 2015, in connection with a bribery scheme in which Menendez allegedly accepted gifts from Melgen in exchange for using the power of his Senate office to benefit the doctor’s financial and personal interests.

An 11-week trial ended with a hung jury in 2017 and McCormick earned four out of ten votes in her grassroots 2018 Democratic primary challenge to Senator Menendez.

“For more than two decades, MoveOn members have organized and mobilized together, putting our collective people power to work to build a country and world where everyone can thrive,” said one active member who asked not to be identified. “Robert Menendez, Jr. is a wealthy, privileged senator’s son who shares the hawkish, conservative values of his Cuban upbringing and the ethical perversion exhibited by his father and described in detail in his 2015 criminal indictment. Menendez is not the kind of candidate who deserves our support and in his ultra-safe Democratic district, he doesn’t need it.”

It is not clear how long residents have to post objections to the endorsement, but McCormick said voters should not delay because “it would send a terrible message” to have a grassroots organization embrace a corrupt political insider whose interests diverge wildly from those of the working class Americans.

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