- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 28, 2018

UNION CITY, N.J. (AP) - The Latest on Sen. Bob Menendez launching his re-election campaign (all times local):

11:50 a.m.

New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez has officially announced his campaign for a third term in the U.S. Senate, with no mention of the corruption scandal that dogged him until two months ago.

The Democrat launched his campaign Wednesday at Union City High School. His parents settled in Union City after they emigrated from Cuba and it’s where he served as mayor before going on to state and national office.

Menendez told the enthusiastic crowd of a few thousand students and top Democrats that he would continue to oppose the policies of Republican President Donald Trump.

Menendez’s bribery and fraud trial ended in a hung jury last November. The government elected not to retry him on charges that he traded his political influence for gifts and favors from a longtime friend and donor.

___

12:01 am.

U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez has put a federal corruption case behind him and is set to officially kick off his campaign for a third term.

The 64-year-old New Jersey Democrat has stops planned on Wednesday in the northern and southern parts of the state. He’s being challenged by Republican Bob Hugin, a wealthy former biopharmaceutical executive.

Menendez was tried last fall on charges he traded his political influence for gifts and campaign donations from a friend. The case ended in a hung jury.

Federal prosecutors dropped all charges about two months ago.

Democrats this year are defending 10 Senate seats in states won by Donald Trump in 2016, as Republicans work to hold their narrow 51-vote majority.

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