Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie condemned Sen. Bob Menendez’s actions Sunday after the New Jersey senator was indicted last week on bribery charges.
“There is no way that any public official has any legal, or plausible, or ethical explanation for having $500,000 in cash stuffed in jackets and envelopes throughout their home, gold bars that have the fingerprints, DNA of someone who you were attempting to fix the system for,” Christie said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
Menendez, a Democrat, and his wife were indicted on Friday for accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes in cash, gold bars, a Mercedes-Benz C-300 convertible and home mortgage payments in exchange for using the senator’s position to benefit the businesspeople and the government of Egypt from 2018 to 2022.
Menendez, 69, called the charges “baseless allegations” and said prosecutors “have misrepresented the normal work of a Congressional office.” Numerous New Jersey Democrats have pushed for him to resign, including Gov. Phil Murphy.
Christie, a GOP presidential candidate, found himself once again discussing Menendez’s legal troubles Sunday. Menendez was indicted in 2015 when Christie was governor of New Jersey, and in 2006, Christie investigated Menendez when he was U.S. Attorney for New Jersey.
Christie posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, on Saturday that Menendez should resign.
Rep. Andy Kim (D-N.J.) said Saturday he would run against Menendez, who is up for reelection in 2024. When asked by “Meet the Press” host Kristen Welker on Sunday, Christie ruled out a Senate run against Menendez.
“I had a chance to appoint myself to the United States Senate, Kristen, in 2013 when [Sen.] Frank Lautenberg passed away and I was governor,” Christie said. “If I didn’t appoint myself to the United States Senate, the easiest way to get there, I sure as heck am not going to run for it.”