Here are today’s political law links, 4-2

SENATOR INDICTED.  WP.  “Federal prosecutors unveiled a 14-count indictment Wednesday of Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), one of his party’s leading voices on foreign affairs, charging him with using his office to benefit an eye doctor in exchange for many gifts over their decades of friendship.”

INDICTMENT NEWS.  Star Ledger.   “Also indicted was Menendez’s friend and campaign donor, Dr. Salomon Melgen, a West Palm Beach, Fla., ophthalmologist.”

CORRUPTION CHARGES.  NYT.  “The indictment, the first federal bribery charges against a sitting senator in a generation, puts in jeopardy Mr. Menendez’s political future and carries a possible sentence of 15 years in prison for each of the eight counts of bribery.”

THEORY DIFFICULTY.  HuffPo.  “Menendez has denied any wrongdoing, and the case could rest on questions about the reach of the “speech and debate” clause of the Constitution, which makes it very difficult for members of Congress to be prosecuted for their official acts, and difficult for federal investigators to access materials that may implicate members of Congress.”

NEW NONPROFIT.  WP.  “The nonprofit group, Right to Rise Policy Solutions, was quietly established in Arkansas in February by a friend and former Bush staffer. The group shares the name of two political committees for which Bush has been aggressively raising money — blurring the line that is supposed to separate a campaign from independent groups.”

CHAIR ON TESTING.  WP (A. Ravel).  “There is no such thing as pre-testing the waters.”

DC:  UNFINISHED WORK.  WP.  “The choice of identifying Gray in Thompson’s proceedings was the judge’s. The timing was Machen’s.”

MN:  GAP PROPOSED.  KIMT.  “Many states and the U.S. government have limits against lawmakers becoming lobbyists too soon, but Minnesota does not.”

VT:  RGA TO PAY.  BFP.  “The Republican Governors Association will pay $40,000 for violating Vermont campaign finance laws while supporting Brian Dubie in the 2010 governor’s election, the state Attorney General’s Office announced Monday.”

HAVE A GOOD DAY.  I’ll send around the next set of links on Tuesday.  Have a great weekend.

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