Why N.J. Sen. Bob Menendez is in the political fight of his life

Why N.J. Sen. Bob Menendez is in the political fight of his life
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[Ed. – Even blue staters are willing to tolerate only so much corruption from their elected officials.]

New Jersey’s US Senate election has turned into an honest-to-goodness horse race — and rightly so.

new Quinnipiac Poll shows scandal-scarred Democratic incumbent Bob Menendez leading GOP challenger Bob Hugin by just six points, 43 percent to 37 percent.

That’s down from the 17-point lead Menendez held in the last Q Poll back in March, in a state where Republicans haven’t won a Senate election since Richard Nixon was president.

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One explanation is provided in the same poll, which shows “ethics in government” as Garden State voters’ top issue.

Those voters, says Quinnipiac analyst Mary Snow, “are sending a clear message: They are troubled by the ethics cloud hanging over” Menendez.

Democratic voters, recall, sent Menendez the same message in June’s primary, when nearly 40 percent cast their ballots for an unknown who spent no money and didn’t even bother campaigning.

It’s not all that hard to figure out why: Menendez may have dodged a legal bullet when prosecutors opted not to retry him after his first corruption case ended in a hung jury.

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