Caplin & Drysdale's Trevor Potter
spoke to The Daily Beast
concerning Senator Bob Menendez who was recently indicted on 14 criminal counts of bribery, conspiracy, and making false statements. The charges relate to Mr. Menendez's relationship with Salomon Melgen, a wealthy ophthalmologist in Florida. The government claims Mr. Melgen was generous to Mr. Menendez, both personally and politically, in return for official actions by Senator Menendez. Mr. Potter's comments relate to a large contribution given by the doctor to a SuperPac to benefit the Senator's election campaign. To read the full story, please visit The Daily Beast's website
. Excerpt taken from the article.
Trevor Potter, former chairman of the Federal Elections Commission, agreed. On the Acela from Washington to New York City on Thursday afternoon, Potter told me that "the reality" is "that of course, candidates and officeholders are in the middle of the super PAC world." He said it was a predictable outcome, although "the court claimed it wasn't going to happen."
The whole idea of Citizens United was that huge sums of money injected into politics wouldn't cause corruption because the politicians themselves wouldn't be involved in the super PACs—but what about Menendez and Melgen, so close that the latter selected hotel suites for the former?
"It's possible that [Melgen] did that without anyone talking to the Menendez world," Potter said, an eyebrow raised skeptically.