Cuellar Chief of Staff Resigns Amid Arrest and Charges

 May 7, 2024

This week, Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) was indicted along with his wife on bribery charges.

Cuellar’s chief of staff has since resigned, which is not a good sign for the polarizing Democrat.

Talking Points…
- Cuellar gets indicted
- Chief of Staff resignation
- Analysis

Cueller Indicted by DOJ

Rep. Cuellar has been a polarizing figure even since Joe Biden took over the White House. Within months of Biden’s administration taking power, Cuellar started to call out Biden for the issues at the border. This led to Cuellar facing a hard primary race in his last election, which he managed to win barely, but he continues to be a hard target for Democrats who want him to pipe down about the border.

During that time, it was announced that the FBI had raided Cuellar’s home in early 2022, less than two months before the election. The DOJ was criticized for breaking the unwritten rule of opening a case so close to an election cycle, but sources familiar with the DOJ stated the only way this would happen is if they were worried that not taking action could result in an ongoing crime.

When Cuellar’s home was raided, law enforcement officials stated that Cuellar was not the target of the investigation, but that was obviously a lie. If not, whatever was found soon pointed them in the direction of Cuellar, and he then became a target in the investigation.

Two years later, nothing happened to Cueller. Then, Friday rolled around, and Cueller and his wife were both charged with a bribery scheme. According to reports, the couple has been charged with allegedly accepting roughly $600,000 in bribes from two different foreign entities. The DOJ stated:

“The bribe payments were allegedly laundered, pursuant to sham consulting contracts, through a series of front companies and middlemen into shell companies owned by Imelda Cuellar, who performed little to no legitimate work under the contracts.

“In exchange for the bribes paid by the Azerbaijani oil and gas company, Congressman Cuellar allegedly agreed to use his office to influence U.S. foreign policy in favor of Azerbaijan. In exchange for the bribes paid by the Mexican bank, Congressman Cuellar allegedly agreed to influence legislative activity and to advise and pressure high-ranking U.S. Executive Branch officials regarding measures beneficial to the bank.”

Chief of Staff Resigns

Generally speaking, if the staff has confidence that their man (or woman) is innocent, they will stay and work through the investigation and trial. If they feel as though their career could be at risk for working for a corrupt politician, they will bail. To that point, it is not a good sign for Cuellar that Chief of Staff Jacob Hochberg has already decided to call it quits on Cuellar within 72 hours of charges being filed.

There was not a lot of fanfare or a big statement from any of the interested parties when the resignation was reported. Punch Bowl News reporter Mica Soellner broke the story, but there was not much information on the post other than Hochberg having resigned. The only note came from CNN reporter Haley Talbot, who posted on X:

“Hochberg called staff about an hour ago to let them know.”


Needless to say, this is not a good sign for Cuellar, but he did get some help from an unexpected ally. Donald Trump decided to give Cuellar a boost by saying that, like Trump, Cuellar was being targeted by Biden’s DOJ for having criticized Biden on the border. Trump claimed:

“Biden just Indicted Henry Cuellar because the Respected Democrat Congressman wouldn’t play Crooked Joe’s Open Border game.

“He was for Border Control, so they said, ‘Let’s use the FBI and DOJ to take him out!’ This is the way they operate.”

Trump is clearly trying to make Cuellar an ally here, but I am not sure Cuellar is willing to go that route just yet. Meanwhile, Cuellar has pleaded not guilty to all charges and insists that he will clear his name when this is all over.

About Jerry McConway

Jerry McConway is an independent political author and investigator who lives in Dallas, Texas. He has spent years building a strong following of readers who know that he will write what he believes is true, even if it means criticizing politicians his followers support. His readers have come to expect his integrity.

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