May 25th, 2010
01:23 PM ET
4 years ago

Tea Party activists try to oust senator, NJ Supreme court hears case

 Tea party activists and conservatives are hoping to oust New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez from office.
Tea party activists and conservatives are hoping to oust New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez from office.

Washington (CNN) - On Tuesday, the Supreme Court of New Jersey heard a case brought by Tea party activists and conservatives hoping to oust New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez from his job.

The state's highest court heard arguments from the New Jersey Tea Party Patriots, and other conservative groups, on whether or not voters can recall the Democratic senator, who has two years left in his term. Among those participating in the case is Richard Luzzi, President of the Morristown Tea Party and a Republican candidate for Congress.

The activists cite Menendez's votes for the recently passed health care law, and his support of government spending, as reasons to recall him.

"By recalling Senator Menendez we are saying No to insane spending that has brought our state and our nation to the brink of bankruptcy," a website for Recall NJ states.

Their arguments must clear a big hurdle: do voters in a state have the right to recall a federal elected official?

While New Jersey has a state law allowing for the recall of federal office holders, the U.S. Constitution does not.

The New Jersey Tea Party activists argue their efforts are legal, claiming that the Constitution does not prohibit New Jersey's recall law.

But lawyers for Menendez believe the suit won't pass Constitutional muster. They cite the U.S. Constitution's requirement that a senator serve six years in office.

Menendez's office is also blasting the key Tea Party group fueling the lawsuit.

"This organization rejoices in candidates who call it 'un-American' to hold major foreign corporations accountable for damage they cause and who believe discrimination by private businesses should be legal," Menendez Communications Director Afshin Mohamadi said in a statement to CNN.

"They are opposing the U.S. Constitution in court and they are opposing the values of mainstream New Jersey families in the court of public opinion," he added.


Filed under: New Jersey • Robert Menendez • Tea Party movement
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. RINO

    This is the most ridiculous thing I've seen. The judge should find the sore losers for contempt. They want to recall him for his yes vote on health reform which we need, they want to recall him because of his support for finance reform, and they want to recall the election and give it to John McCain.

    May 25, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  2. grrace

    Americans and U.S. residents/taxpayers need to start shunning this hate group from society. If you know a "teabagger" (self-named) remove them from your homes and offices. Tell them you don't support hate groups.

    May 25, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  3. ATPP

    What freakin' morons the teabaggers are. Too much beck/limbo/hannity/orielly on the brain. These folks will certainly bring our country down unless people wake up to the real world, not the bizzaro world palin lives in.

    May 25, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  4. Tom S.

    Is it just me or does this scare the crap out of anyone else?

    "Do what we tell you to do and think what we tell you to think or your'e through!"

    And they call President Obama a Nazi!

    May 25, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  5. Carl

    If the people of NJ voted him in, and NJ law allows for recall of THEIR senator, then if the people of NJ want to recall their senator they should have that right. The senator's comments are obviously self-serving and frankly, wrong. If this is overridden due to the US Constitution concerns, it may be time to amend the constitution...again.

    May 25, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  6. Army Vet in Charlotte

    These teabaggers are dumb as bricks.
    Apparently out-of-control spending was OK two years ago. Where was the recall of W?

    May 25, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  7. Linda from Minnesota

    Ok, I've heard enough about these tea partiers. Obviously they are nuts. You don't agree with his stance on the issues – vote him out NEXT TIME. Had I known this was an option – I would have started a campaign to get George Bush recalled. Enough already.

    May 25, 2010 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  8. florence

    Another audacity of Tea Party! What a worthless organization.

    May 25, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  9. larry

    These Teabaggers are complete morons.

    May 25, 2010 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  10. larry

    "The White Annoying Teabaggers" make me want to puke.

    May 25, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  11. JS in CT

    NO, they do not. THE TEA PARTY IS THE BIGGEST THREAT TO DEMOCRACY IN OUR COUNTRY! The voters of New Jersey elected Menendez, and he voted in the sentate the way he believes. GROW UP, YOU RIGHT-WING HOOLIGAN WINDBAGS.

    May 25, 2010 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  12. lforlegend

    Those nuTTbag of is really nuts. Go get them Mike Steele and reel them fools in.

    May 25, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  13. Julia- Idaho Native American

    Tea Party the party of white racist, neocons, hell bent on destroying the constitution of the United States. These people are dangerous, who is their Savior, well Little Timmy McVeight no doubt.

    May 25, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  14. Julia- Idaho Native American

    Tea Party the party of white racist, neocons, hell bent on destroying the constitution of the United States. These people are dangerous, who is their Savior, well Little Timmy McVeigh no doubt.

    May 25, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  15. Ferret out the BS

    The people of New Jersey should be careful of what they wish for. Certainly when Governor Davis was recalled in California, we didn't fare any better with the current governor. So he voted a way that many don't agree with, this is part of representation. Unless he committed a criminal act he should not be recalled simply because he didn't please some people.

    May 25, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  16. Michael Trout

    How much will it cost to hold a special election to oust Menendez and if it succeeds to hold another for his replacement? It doesn't sound like this is really about saving money, does it? It sounds like someone lost the election and wants a do-over; can you say "republicans"?

    May 25, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  17. Republicans is smart in the head area

    The tea party is such an absolute waste of time. Luzzi is a Republican candidate for congress and claims to be a member of the tea party? This recall is absurd and a waste of time/money.

    May 25, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  18. key

    Where wear these people just two years ago this has to be the most crazy thing today. Please take not in CA we recalled Gray Davis and got the Governator yep that's right.

    May 25, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. PaulC

    The voters give the tea party power at their own risk. Remember the Contract With America?
    You heard nothing from the "activists" during the reign of Bush II while he pushed through a $1 trillion war of choice, doubled the budget, authorized torture etc.. Suddenly, with the election of a half black president who is continuing most of the policies of Bush II, they find that they must "take the country back", cut spending and kick the bums out. Coincidence? I think not.

    May 25, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
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