Gee, isn’t this a bit of a conflict of interest?
In one key move, Menendez has begun to rely for guidance on trusted aides and former advisers, including one who is very close to Attorney General Eric Holder. Menendez’s campaign has hired Matt Miller, a former top spokesman for the Justice Department — which is investigating a campaign donor caught up in the scandal — under Holder.
“Bob Menendez has been a friend and a mentor for years,” Miller said. “And like a lot of people, I want to do anything I can to help fight these ridiculous smears.”
Menendez has also quietly started to distance himself from Melgen, even though he enjoys a long personal relationship with the Florida doctor and tried to intervene on Melgen’s behalf with the State and Commerce departments in relation to a port security contract a Melgen-owned company has with the Dominican government.
Menendez allies are now privately pushing the line that the FBI raid in West Palm Beach was focused on Melgen alone.
Miller, a respected former aide to both Menendez and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), left Justice in 2011. Miller has now been hired by Menendez’s campaign to help out on the scandal, though he would not offer details on how long or how much he will be paid or how long the assignment will be.
Menendez is already being advised by Democratic attorney Marc Elias on ethics-related issues, but it is not clear if Menendez has hired a criminal-defense attorney at this time.