U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez appeals to N.J. Supreme Court to stop recall effort

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez appeals to N.J. Supreme Court to stop recall effort

April 05, 2010 Star Ledger

Calling it an "attack on the Constitution," a spokesman for U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez today said the Democrat has appealed to the state Supreme Court to stop a recall effort.

"Mainstream New Jerseyans believe deeply in the U.S. Constitution that for more than 200 years has made ours the greatest form of government in world history," said Afshin Mohamadi, a spokesman for Menendez (D-N.J.). "This attack on the Constitution undermines our uniquely American system of democracy and will be contested."

Mohamadi said it would be "deceiving to the electorate" to pursue a recall the senator and his lawyer say ultimately will be ruled unconstitutional.

Menendez's attorney and the state Attorney General’s Office have argued the U.S. Constitution trumps both the state constitution and state law, which permit the recall of federal officials. The federal Constitution neither permits nor prohibits such recall efforts.

But the Constitution’s silence is a signal the state’s law and constitution are valid, according to the Committee to Recall Senator Menendez, which is backed by the New Jersey chapter of the conservative Tea Party movement. The groups say they want Menendez out because he votes for too much government spending.

Neither the recall committee nor its attorney could be reached for comment last night.

A three-judge appeals panel in March said the recall effort could go forward because it is legal in New Jersey. But the court also stayed its ruling while Menendez considered an appeal.

The senator has called the recall a "political stunt." He maintains the lack of any recall provision in the U.S. Constitution means his term is for six years and U.S. senators are not subject to recall by voters. His term is up in 2012.

"The lower court declined to decide the fundamental matter at hand; this is why we are appealing and hope that the New Jersey Supreme Court addresses this important issue," Mohamadi said.

If New Jersey’s highest court takes the case, it will be in the position of ruling whether part of the state constitution is unconstitutional.

Comments (0)

New comments are currently disabled.

Email to Friend

Fill in the form below to send this article to a friend:

Email to Friend
* Your Name:
* Your Email:
* Friend's Name:
* Friend's Email:
* Security Image:
Security Image Generate new
Copy the numbers and letters from the security image
* Message: