A spokesman for U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez today responded to allegations that the Democratic senator paid for sex with prostitutes while on a trip to the Dominican Republic, stating that the story is false and the product of the "right-wing smear machine."
Spokesman Michael Soliman also took aim at Republican opponent Joe Kyrillos, who earlier today issued a statement demanding more information about the story, which ran in the Daily Caller.
"It is disgusting that on a day when New Jerseyans are focused on responding to one of the worst disasters to ever hit the state, Joe Kyrillos and the right wing smear machine are peddling lies about Bob Menendez," Soliman said. "Let’s be clear: the accusations Kyrillos and his friends in the right wing media are peddling are absolutely false. This unsubstantiated, untrue attack is a new low, and we hope that Kyrillos will pull his campaign out of the gutter and join us and other leaders in helping get this state back on its feet. Bob Menendez is going to continue to focus on helping New Jersey recover from the devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy and will not be distracted by desperate smears from a flailing campaign in the final days before an election."
The story posted early this morning alleges that Menendez engaged in sex with two prostitutes while on an Easter weekend trip to the Dominican Republic. According to the story, The two prostitutes were then stiffed on the agreed upon payment.
In a statement, the Kyrillos camp compared the story to the scandal that engulfed the president's Secret Service detail earlier this year in which agents engaged in sex with prostitutes while on trips with the president.
"Like the recent Secret Service sex scandal in Colombia, the allegations reported today are deeply disturbing and raise serious questions," said Kyrillos Campaign Communications Director Meaghan Cronin. "Senator Menendez must do the right thing and help settle this matter by immediately releasing his schedule and travel documents from the time the alleged incidents occurred. The people of New Jersey deserve answers today."
A spokesman for Kyrillos denied planting the story with the Daily Caller and reiterated the call for Menendez to put the issue to rest by releasing travel records.
The political establishment has viewed the story with a skeptical eye as it relies on translated interviews with the prostitutes.
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"Enlisting Fox is another reminder of how much Christie has truly relied on insiders, including Democrats, to bolster his agenda or bail him out of trouble. Not long after arriving in Trenton in 2009, Christie began collaborating with George Norcross, the deeply entrenched Democratic Party kingmaker, to help him cut deals with a Democratic-controlled Legislature.
When his close ally David Samson resigned as chairman of the Port Authority over conflict-of-interest questions earlier this year, Christie replaced Samson with John Degnan, a pillar of the Democratic Party establishment. And now, confronted with a crisis, Christie has turned to “Jamie,’’ as Fox has been known throughout political circles since he began as an aide in the Democratic Senate in the 1980s." - columnist Charles Stile
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