WASHINGTON - Andy Kim, a Democratic congressman from New Jersey, said Saturday he will run against newly indicted U.S. Sen Bob Menendez because he refuses to resign over the criminal charges against him.
"After calls to resign, Senator Menendez said 'I am not going anywhere,'" Kim said on the social media site X. "As a result, I feel compelled to run against him. Not something I expected to do, but NJ deserves better."
Menendez is up for re-election next year.
Kim's declaration came a day after a federal grand jury indicted Menendez and his wife on charges of taking bribes that included gold bars, wads of cash, mortgage assistance, and a Mercedes Benz.
Calls for Menendez to resign came from several New Jersey Democrats, a group that included Gov. Phil Murphy as well as Kim.
Menedez, who did agree to vacate his chairmanship of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, proclaimed his innocence and attacked those seeking his ouster.
“It is not lost on me how quickly some are rushing to judge a Latino and push him out of his seat," Menendez said. "I am not going anywhere.”
Menendez, appointed to a vacant Senate seat in 2006, was a solid favorite for re-election in 2024.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Bob Menendez indictment: Congressman Andy Kim plans to run against him