Reports: Menendez intervened for Palm Beach donor doc in Medicare disputeby George Bennett | February 7th, 2013
Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., contacted federal health care officials in 2009 and 2012 about a Medicare billing dispute involving Dr. Salomon Melgen, the Palm Beach County eye doctor and Democratic donor whose office was raided by federal agents last week.
The reports by The Washington Post and The New York Times about the Medicare matter come after revelations that Menendez also went to bat in 2012 for a company in which Melgen has an ownership stake and which had contracted with the Dominican Republic to provide port security.
North Palm Beach resident Melgen, his family and businesses have given more than $1.1 million to federal and state political candidates and committees over the past 20 years, with the bulk of the money going to Democrats.
Menendez has been the largest recipient of Melgen contributions. Melgen family members gave $33,700 to Menendez’s 2012 re-election campaign, $50,000 to the New Jersey Democratic State Committee and $60,400 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee while Menendez was its chairman during the 2010 election cycle. Melgen’s Vitreo-Retinal Consultants also gave $700,000 last year to a Democratic super PAC that aided Menendez’s re-election efforts.
Melgen, through attorneys, has denied any wrongdoing.