Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) has called for his fellow Democrat Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) to resign or be expelled from the Senate.
Fetterman made the call while commenting on Rep. George Santos (R-NY) being formally expelled from Congress on Friday.
Santos was ousted by a bipartisan majority of his House colleagues amid a federal criminal indictment and damning House Ethics Committee report.
The report outlined varied and numerous instances of alleged fraud and deceit.
Fetterman supported the expulsion of Santos but also demanded that Menendez must also be expelled or forced to resign, according to McClatchy News.
During an appearance on ABC’s “The View,” the senator argued that Menendez’s actions are “much more sinister and serious” than the allegations against Santos.
“He needs to go,” Fetterman said of Menendez.
This is not the first time that Fetterman has called for Menendez to be ousted from the Senate in the wake of a criminal indictment against the New Jersey senator.
The indictment alleges Menendez accepted bribes to act on behalf of the interests of the government of Egypt.
On Friday, “The View” co-host Joy Behar asked Fetterman to weigh in on the expulsion of Santos from Congress that had just occurred.
Fetterman said he was “not surprised” that Santos was expelled.
However, rather than bashing Santos, Fetterman took aim at Menendez.
“To me, the more important picture is that we have a colleague in the Senate that actually does much more sinister and serious kinds of things, Sen. Menendez,” Fetterman said.
“He needs to go.”
“And if you are going to expel Santos, how can you allow somebody like Menendez to remain in the Senate?” he continued.
“Santos’s lies were almost funny, like he landed on the moon and that kind of stuff, whereas, you know, I think Menendez is really a senator for Egypt and not New Jersey.”
“So I really think he needs to go, and especially it’s kind of strange that if Santos is not allowed to remain in the House, someone like [Menendez] is” permitted to stay in the Senate, Fetterman added.
He went on to acknowledge that while Menendez had a right to his “day in court,” he did not have a right to remain in the Senate and that it was time for his fellow senators to decide to “send him out.”
CBS News reported that Santos, after having previously survived two earlier expulsion votes, was ousted from the House on Friday following a 311-114 vote in favor of his expulsion.
That vote followed a federal criminal indictment that included nearly two dozen charges related to conspiracy, campaign finance violations, fraud, making false statements, money laundering, and theft, among other things, as well as a House Ethics Committee report that summarized much of the same.
As for Menendez, Axios reported that he was criminally indicted for allegedly accepting bribes — in the form of cash, gold bars, home furnishings, a luxury vehicle, and other things of value — in exchange for using his powerful position as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to take actions that benefited the Egyptian government.
Menendez stepped down from his chairmanship but has otherwise remained defiant, professed his innocence, and refused to resign from the Senate.
McClatchy reported that, in response to Fetterman’s remarks, Menendez said:
“Mr. Fetterman appears to think he’s judge, jury, and executioner,” and “seems to be more interested in clickbait than justice.”
“He cannot say he stands for core constitutional principles of due process and the presumption of innocence when he is actively working to undermine my rights,” the embattled New Jersey senator added of his Pennsylvania colleague.
“I’m confident when all the facts are presented, I will be exonerated and the Senator will have to eat his words.”