Latino leaders dismiss Sen. Menendez’s claim of persecution over ethnicity

Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-Calif.), chair of the House Democratic Caucus, said at a news conference after a meeting with the caucus at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C: “Latinos face barriers and discrimination across the board in so many categories, including in our justice system.”

“This is not that. What we read in the indictment and the charges, we should not conflate the discrimination and the issues and the barriers that Latinos have in the justice system and across industries.”

“It would be best if he resigned,” Aguilar added.

Menendez pleaded not guilty to bribery charges in a Manhattan federal court Wednesday morning and alleged that he has been “falsely accused” because of his Latino heritage, a broad claim without evidence that has miffed some Latinos, who say it threatens to undermine the real inequities people of color endure.

Hispanic leaders, especially those in New Jersey, say the legal peril Menendez faces is heartbreaking after a long career as a leading voice on issues affecting the Latino community in the state and nationally. Menendez, who was the first Latino to represent New […]


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