Sen. Frank Lautenberg offered a less than full-throated defense of fellow New Jersey Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez on Thursday.
“If there are infractions as they are reported, it’s too bad,” Lautenberg told reporters, according to the local news site NJ.com.
Several prostitutes in the Dominican Republic have accused Menendez of procuring their services and then stiffing them when it came time to pay. He allegedly met the prostitutes after being flown to the island nation by his friend and benefactor Salomon Melgen, who is currently the target of an FBI investigation. (RELATED: Menendez admits frequent Dominican travel, reimburses FBI-raided donor $58,000 for private jet flights)
Menendez denies the allegations. Earlier this week, a spokesman for the senator blamed The Daily Caller for the controversy and said the charges were “politically motivated.”
“There a lot that’s said and covered, but I for one know Bob as a very capable United States senator, and I’m sorry to see him in this position,” Lautenberg said when asked about the allegations. “But I can’t give you anything more. Don’t want to. Don’t know to.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid — who had previously attacked TheDC for its reporting on the Menendez scandal — also passed on an opportunity to defend the senator on Thursday. (RELATED: Reid refers questions about Menendez scandal to the senator himself)
White House spokesman Jay Carney was similarly reluctant to weigh in.
“I don’t have anything for you on those reports,” he said.