Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) on Monday denounced allegations that he visited prostitutes in the Dominican Republic, characterizing a Daily Caller report as "smears" based in falsehoods.
"The smears, the smears that right-wing blogs have been pushing since the election," Mendendez told CNN's Dana Bash are "totally unsubstatiated. It's amazing to me that anonymous, faceless indivuduals on a website can drive a story in to the mainstream. Bottom-line, all of those smears are absoutely false."
Mendendez also defended his relationship with Dr. Salomon Melgen, a Florida friend and donor, after failing to disclose or pay for two roundtrip flights provided by Melgen. Menendez has since reimbursed Melgen $58,500 for the trips on Jan. 4.
"When it came to my attention I did what was right," Menendez said. "When it came to my attention I paid for....after the election when I got to look at the allegations...I ultimately came forward. One of those flights I self-reported."
A woman named as one of the prostitutes visited by Menendez in the Dominican Republic denied earlier Monday that she ever met the embattled Senator or worked as a prostitute.