US SENATOR STEPS DOWN AS CHAIRMAN OF FOREIGN RELATIONS DUE TO ALLEGATIONS

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A seasoned U.S. senator has opted to temporarily relinquish his role as the head of the influential foreign relations committee while he confronts bribery charges brought forth by the Justice Department.

According to prosecutors from the Justice Department, Robert Menendez and his wife stand accused of receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in exchange for assisting the government of Egypt. Both Mr. Menendez and his spouse vehemently deny these allegations.

Despite calls from fellow Democrats in his home state of New Jersey to resign from his Senate seat, the embattled senator has chosen to step down as chairman of the powerful committee "until the matter has been resolved," as announced by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. 

Schumer, a New York Democrat, praised Menendez as a dedicated public servant always advocating for the people of New Jersey.

This isn't the first time that Senator Robert Menendez, aged 69 and a member of Congress since 2006, has had to relinquish his coveted role on the foreign relations panel. 

He previously stepped down in 2015 when facing indictment in New Jersey over allegations of accepting bribes from a Florida eye doctor. That case concluded with a mistrial after jurors failed to reach a unanimous verdict.

During this hiatus, it's expected that Maryland Democrat Ben Cardin, who previously assumed the committee's leading Democrat position, will once again temporarily assume the role to fill the vacancy. 

Mr. Menendez and his spouse, Nadine Arslanian, are alleged to have accepted bribes in various forms, including cash, gold, payments toward a home mortgage, and a luxury vehicle, from three New Jersey businessmen.

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