The Wessex Wire

The Student News Site of West Essex Regional High School

The Wessex Wire

The Wessex Wire

Breaking political news, plotted by complexity and normalcy

Confusing and Unprecedented

Robert Menendez facing allegations of bribery and acting as a foreign agent 

N.J. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman and Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and his wife Nadine, are facing allegations of bribery in an indictment. Menendez is accused of using his position to aid the Egyptian government, pressure prosecutors to drop a case against his friend and exhibit other acts of corruption, according to AP News on Sept. 26. Menendez has since stepped down from his position as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, but has called the claims against him false. Additionally, Menendez and his wife were accused of acting as foreign agents, according to an Oct. 12 New York Times article. His prosecutors claim that despite his position, he acted on behalf of Egypt. —G. A.

Donald Trump indicted on multiple fraud charges 

The state of New York charged former president Trump with 34 counts of falsifying business records, and Georgia charged him with 13 counts in efforts to overturn the 2020 election. If found guilty, he could still run in the presidential election. Over the past year, Trump has faced four different indictments and 91 felony charges. Two federal grand juries have filed charges, one on accusations that he hoarded national defense documents after leaving office, and the other on accusations of probing and interfering with the results of the 2020 election. —B. C.

Straightforward and Unprecedented

Kevin McCarthy removed as Speaker of the House

Speaker of the House of Representatives, California Republican Kevin McCarthy, was voted out of the House on Oct. 3. This historic move occurred after he reached a short-term spending deal with Democrats to avoid a government shutdown. Because of this move, conservative hardliner Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) acted to force a vote to vacate McCarthy. In the past, speakers have stepped down from the position after losing party support, but McCarthy is the first to be voted out. —S. R.

More familiar and confusing

Hunter Biden indicted on charges of firearm possession 

In September, Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden, was indicted on charges of illegal firearm possession while using drugs. The charges were filed under the Grand Jury of Delaware; Hunter Biden and his lawyers are claiming he did not violate the law. The three charges stem from a firearm purchase he made in Los Angeles in 2018. During this time, Hunter Biden was battling a crack cocaine addiction. Though unlikely, if proven guilty, Hunter Biden would face a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison and a fine of $750,000.

—B. C.

Straightforward and more familiar 

Jim Jordan fails to take over as Speaker of the House after three attempts

After Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) was removed as Speaker of the House, several Republicans began vying for his position. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) briefly flirted with running but bowed out before a floor vote, so Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) became the frontrunner, even as Democrats and some Republicans publicly doubted he would be able to unify a fractured GOP. Jordan, who is publicly allied with Donald Trump, has pushed the false narrative that the 2020 president election was stolen, and supported the violent protesters who entered the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 to try and stop the certification of the election. He led a campaign to gain the support of more than 50 Republican holdouts. The Democrats plan to nominate House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries. After two rounds of votes, a group of Republicans made it clear that Jordan did not have enough votes to become the House’s speaker. Jordan originally said he would not force a third speaker vote. As of Oct. 20, Jordan failed the vote for a third time, and the Republican party has dropped him as a nominee for speaker. —S. R.

Behind the Bylines
Sophia Rosen
Sophia Rosen, Managing Editor
Sophia Rosen is a Managing editor on the 2024-2025 Wessex Wire. In her freetime, she enjoys playing tennis and hanging out with her friends. Fun Fact: Her favorite ice cream flavor is rocky road.  
Francesca Loffredo
Francesca Loffredo, Senior Chief News and Features Editor
Francesca Loffredo is a Senior Chief News & Features Editor for the 2022-2023 Wessex Wire. She plays tennis and softball for the West Essex team. Francesca loves hanging out with her friends and family, and spending time at the beach.
Gabe Herman
Gabe Herman, Chief News & Features Editor
Gabe Herman is the Chief News & Features Section Editor for the Wessex Wire. He is in the class of 2025 and started taking journalism in his freshman year. A fun fact about Gabe is that he loves to cook, travel, and spend time with his family and friends.
Gabby Angelo
Gabby Angelo, Editor in Chief
Gabrielle Angelo, but you can call her Gabby, is an Editor in Chief for the 2023-2024 Wessex Wire. She enjoys spending time down the shore swimming in the ocean, eating ice cream and watching the sunsets, and loves anything  "The Vampire Diaries" related! On the weekends you can find her hanging out with friends and family making core memories.  
Brennan Cunningham, News and Features Editor
Brennan Cunningham is a News and Features Editor of the 2023-2024 West Essex Wire staff. He is a musician, Eagle Scout, and loves to spend time with his family, friends and dog.
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