Michael Reynolds/Getty

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

To celebrate those who got married in 2020, the Styles section of the Sunday New York Times included their “favorite” stories of how people proposed. Among them is the story of how Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey popped the question in December to his girlfriend, Nadine Arslanian, described by Politico as “an international businesswoman from Bergen County.”

I want to list a few things about that proposal and about this story. These items are factual, according to the paper of record:

1. Menendez “sings all the time,” according to his bride. “He sings every morning, every night, and in-between while he smokes his after-dinner cigar.”

2. Menendez met his future wife at the IHOP in Union City, New Jersey.

3. Menendez was introduced “by the owner” of the IHOP to his wife.

4. Menendez was engaged five months later.

5. Menendez and his wife visited four continents in five months and he sang to her on each trip.

6. Menendez was “very, very hot” upon first sight, according to his wife.

7. Menendez proposed at the Taj Mahal.

8. Menendez stood behind his future bride at the Princess Diana bench and sang to her, as a prelude to his proposal at the Taj Mahal.

9. Menendez—who long hinted that “a certain song” would let her know the engagement was coming—sang “Never Enough” from The Greatest Showman, the film released in 2017 in which Hugh Jackman plays P.T. Barnum, as a prelude to his proposal at the Taj Mahal.

10. Here is the video of that moment.

11. Despite the proposal taking place in front of the Taj freaking Mahal, the whole vibe here is so very Jersey that you wonder why Frankie Valli isn’t there.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate