Menendez’s Son Prepares to Run for His Father’s Outdated Home Seat

Robert Menendez Jr., the 36-year-old son of New Jersey’s senior United States senator, has informed political leaders that he’ll run for Congress to switch Consultant Albio Sires, who introduced on Monday that he is not going to search re-election.

If elected, Mr. Menendez, a Democrat, and his father, Senator Robert Menendez, the 67-year-old chairman of the Senate’s International Relations Committee, could be prone to serve collectively in Washington.

The youthful Mr. Menendez is a training lawyer who could be making his first run for public workplace, and he’s anticipated to face challengers from the left within the Democratic stronghold that features closely city elements of Hudson, Essex and Union Counties. He didn’t return calls or emails.

However even earlier than Mr. Sires confirmed that he meant to step down when his time period ends subsequent 12 months, highly effective political leaders had already begun to coalesce help behind Mr. Menendez.

In an interview on Tuesday, Mr. Sires, a former mayor of West New York, N.J., who has served within the Home of Representatives since 2006, mentioned the youthful Mr. Menendez informed him that he deliberate to run and requested for his help.

Senator Menendez, who declined to remark by way of a spokesman, held the identical seat within the Home earlier than being appointed to the Senate in 2006 to fill a place vacated by Jon Corzine after he was elected governor; the borders of the district, now generally known as the Eighth Congressional District, have since been barely redrawn.

In June, Mr. Menendez was appointed a commissioner of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey after being nominated by Gov. Philip D. Murphy, a fellow Democrat.

“I feel he’s the proper match for the district,” mentioned Mr. Sires, 70, who emigrated from Cuba as an 11-year-old.

As a reasonable who is also of Cuban heritage, Mr. Menendez would join nicely with voters, Mr. Sires mentioned.

“He’s shiny. He’s articulate. He’s energetic,” Mr. Sires mentioned. “He comes from good inventory.”

“He informed me, ‘No matter I can do to assist him, please do,’ ” Mr. Sires added. “I informed him I’d be there.”

Brian Stack, a state senator who can also be the mayor of Union Metropolis, a largely Latino group that could be a key voting bloc within the district, additionally shortly expressed help for Mr. Menendez.

“He shall be a fantastic congressman,” Mr. Stack informed the New Jersey Globe, which first reported that Mr. Sires was retiring and that Mr. Menendez deliberate to run for the empty seat.

Hector Oseguera, a left-leaning Democrat who challenged Mr. Sires final 12 months and misplaced by a big margin, mentioned that working within the district required a deep understanding of the Democratic political machine in Hudson County.

“You’ll be able to’t actually parachute in,” mentioned Mr. Oseguera, who mentioned he would think about working once more provided that “no person emerges from the progressive motion.”

Ravi Bhalla, a progressive Democrat who was re-elected mayor of Hoboken final month, had been thought-about a possible candidate for the seat. However on Tuesday Mr. Bhalla, the primary Sikh elected mayor in New Jersey, dashed speak that he had any curiosity in working and strongly recommended that he would help the candidate tapped by the Democratic Celebration management.

“Whereas I’m honored and humbled to have been approached by members of the Sikh and South Asian group, together with different stakeholders to run for Congress,” he wrote on Twitter, “I’m 100% dedicated to serving the residents of Hoboken as mayor.”

Mr. Sires, who has served on the Home transportation and overseas affairs committees, mentioned that he thought-about passage of President Biden’s $1 trillion infrastructure invoice — and the advantages it presents for public transit in New Jersey — the capstone of his profession.

He’s one in every of 25 members of Congress who’ve introduced that they have been quitting politics.

“It was time,” mentioned Mr. Sires, who additionally served within the New Jersey Legislature, the place he was the primary Latino Meeting speaker. “I’m very grateful for the chance this nation gave me, and I’m completely satisfied to have had the prospect to provide again.”

He mentioned the hyperpartisan political divide in Washington had performed a task in his resolution.

“Washington is a really tough place to work now,” he mentioned. “You both must be a part of the left or a part of the best. There appears to be no room within the center.”

Senator Menendez’s quest for energy is markedly totally different than his son’s. Earlier than he was 21, the senator was elected to the college board in Union Metropolis, the place he was raised, the son of Cuban immigrants. He went on to grow to be the mayor of town and a state legislator.

A long time later he survived an admonishment from a Senate panel for accepting items from a rich physician and a 2017 federal trial on corruption costs. He emerged years later as some of the highly effective Democratic members of Congress.

Solely two of New Jersey’s 12 Home representatives are Republicans. However a redistricting fee is predicted to launch the state’s new congressional map on Wednesday, and a number of other Democrats in swing districts are prone to face fierce challenges for re-election as Mr. Biden’s reputation wanes.

It isn’t unusual for a kid to comply with a dad or mum into Congress; it has occurred no less than 42 instances within the Senate alone between 1774 and 1989, in accordance with the Biographical Listing of the US Congress.

However solely a handful of youngsters have served in Congress concurrently their dad or mum, and there aren’t any pairs within the present 117th Congress, in accordance with the Library of Congress.

Mr. Menendez, who’s registered to vote in Jersey Metropolis, N.J., is a 2008 graduate of the College of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in accordance with a biography on his regulation agency’s web site. He and his father each graduated from Rutgers Legislation Faculty.

Consultant Invoice Pascrell, a New Jersey Democrat who has labored carefully with Mr. Sires within the Home, known as Mr. Sires “a large in each sense of the phrase.”

“Albio has battled for Amtrak and our commuters. He has battled for immigrants and human rights. And he’s battled to provide the Backyard State its rightful share of the pie we’re so usually denied,” Mr. Pascrell mentioned in an announcement.

“He’s my buddy and I’m going to overlook him enormously,” he added. “Now we have huge sneakers to fill.”

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