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N.J. Sen. Menendez Approval Rating Plunges Amid Twin Scandals

Robert Menendez, the influential U.S. senator from New Jersey, has seen his approval ratings drop 15 percentage points in less than a month, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

The Democrat has suffered two major setbacks: one, allegations regarding his ties to Saloman Melgen, a Florida doctor, whom was reimbursed for over $50,000 for two flights on his private jet, following an inquiry by a Senate ethics committee; second, Menendez is under investigation by the FBI for allegedly visiting underage prostitutes while on vacation in the Dominican Republic.

Menendez denies the accusations, and the Washington Post reports investigators are having trouble turning up evidence.

"U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez took an overseas trip and the poll numbers he left behind in New Jersey are dreadful - down 15 points in less than a month," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"More than two thirds of voters have heard of his troubles and the more they know, the less they approve," added Carroll.

Menendez, who won an easy re-election in November, recently assumed the prestigious post of chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

by RTT Staff Writer

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