Rep. Rob Menendez, D-N.J., has clinched victory over Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla in the fiercely contested Democratic primary for New Jersey’s 8th District, according to the Associated Press.

Menendez Jr., son of Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., faced a politically turbulent landscape marked by his father’s federal bribery charges. Despite Sen. Menendez’s not-guilty plea and the absence of allegations against the congressman, Bhalla and his supporters attempted to associate him with his father’s legal troubles.

Elected to Congress in 2022 with strong backing from the Democratic establishment, Rob Menendez Jr. previously served as a commissioner for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Bhalla, a former civil rights attorney, launched his campaign last December, presenting himself as a viable alternative to the incumbent.

Menendez Jr. overcame substantial obstacles, garnering backing from party leaders in both New Jersey and Washington, D.C. For example, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and other prominent House Democrats hosted a fundraiser for him last month.

Nonetheless, Bhalla showcased robust fundraising capabilities, amassing just over $2 million compared to Menendez Jr.’s $1.6 million, as per Federal Election Commission records.

With this primary win, Menendez Jr. is now poised for re-election in the heavily Democratic 8th congressional district. This victory virtually ensures his second term, solidifying his standing within the party and the district.