Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
GOP Rep. George Santos Warns His Expulsion from Congress Will 'Haunt' Members
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 4 months ago on
November 30, 2023

Share

WASHINGTON — A defiant Rep. George Santos is refusing to resign and warned on Thursday that his expulsion from Congress before being convicted in a court of law would establish a precedent that “is going to be the undoing of a lot of members of this body.”

The first-term Republican congressman from New York could well become just the sixth member of the House to have been expelled by colleagues. Republicans and Democrats have offered resolutions to remove him, and the House is expected to vote on one of them Friday.

While Santos survived two earlier expulsion efforts, a critical House Ethics Committee report released on Nov. 16 has convinced more members that his actions merit the House’s most severe punishment.

Santos preempted the vote with a press conference just outside the Capitol early Thursday. He noted that, of the previous expulsions, three were for disloyalty to the Union during the Civil War and two were for lawmakers who had been convicted in federal court. In short, he presented himself as someone who was being treated differently.

“This will haunt them in the future where mere allegations are sufficient to have members removed from office when duly elected by their people in their respective states and districts,” Santos said.

The Allegations

The House Ethics Committee said it had amassed “overwhelming evidence” of lawbreaking by Santos that had been sent to the Justice Department. The report concluded flatly that he “cannot be trusted” after a monthslong investigation into his conduct.

The panel said that Santos knowingly caused his campaign committee to file false or incomplete reports with the Federal Election Commission, used campaign funds for personal purposes and violated the Ethics in Government Act concerning financial disclosure statements filed with the House.

Santos also faces a 23-count federal indictment that alleges he stole the identities of campaign donors and then used their credit cards to make tens of thousands of dollars in unauthorized charges. Federal prosecutors say Santos, who has pleaded not guilty, wired some of the money to his personal bank account and used the rest to pad his campaign coffers.

The Aftermath

Santos was a bright spot for the GOP when he won his election in November 2022, flipping a seat that had been held by the Democrats and helping Republicans take control of the House. But, soon after, reports began to emerge that Santos had lied about having Jewish ancestry, a career at top Wall Street firms and a college degree. He turned into a distraction and an embarrassment to his party.

In early March, the House Ethics Committee announced it was launching an investigation into Santos. That was followed in May when the U.S. attorney’s office for the Eastern District of New York unveiled a 13-count federal indictment that was later replaced with the 23-count indictment.

Santos easily survived an expulsion vote in early November, before the Ethics Committee unveiled its findings. The vote was 179 for expulsion and 213 against, with 41 others voting present or not voting.

The vote on Friday will mark the third expulsion effort of his short tenure in Congress. Expulsion from the House requires a two-thirds vote, a high bar.

“It’s just an unfortunate circumstance that I have to sit here and watch Congress waste the American people’s time over and over again on something that is the power of the people, not the power of Congress,” Santos said.

The history behind expulsion was not lost on Santos, but rather than seek to avoid it by resigning, he sought to frame it as an unfair persecution, saying “if I leave, they win. If I leave, the bullies take place. This is bullying.”

“They are trying to join me to the group of three Confederates and two people convicted in a court of law,” Santos said. “So, if I am to be expelled tomorrow, I will be number six in the history, the first Republican and the only one without a conviction or without having committed treason.”

He also assailed the Ethics Committee report as “littered in hyperbole, littered in opinion.” He emphasized the decision by the committee to submit the report to the House without making a recommendation on punishment. Submitting a recommendation would have required a longer, trial-like process. “Changing precedent for me, it seems that it’s all fair game,” Santos said.

As part of his claim of being treated differently, he said he would be offering a privileged resolution on the House floor on Thursday to expel Democratic Rep. Jamaal Bowman from office. Bowman pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count for triggering a fire alarm as lawmakers scrambled to pass a funding bill before a government shutdown deadline.

Bowman will pay a $1,000 fine and serve three months of probation, after which the false fire alarm charge is expected to be dismissed from his record under an agreement with prosecutors.

“Let’s hold our own accountable,” Santos said, “but let’s make sure we do it with the precedent of the House.”

Bowman replied in a press release that no one in Congress or anywhere else in America “takes soon-to-be former Congressman George Santos seriously.”

“This,” Bowman said, “is just another meaningless stunt in his long history of cons, antics, and outright fraud.”

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., said he had “real reservations” about the expulsion of Santos. He said he was concerned about the precedent it would set, but he also said that GOP leadership is telling members to “vote their conscience.”

Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries of New York held his weekly press conference with a massive photo next to him of Santos and Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia sitting in the House chamber together and laughing.

“George Santos is a malignant distraction, and hopefully that issue gets resolved,” Jeffries said.

 

RELATED TOPICS:

DON'T MISS

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

DON'T MISS

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

DON'T MISS

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

DON'T MISS

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

DON'T MISS

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

DON'T MISS

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

DON'T MISS

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

DON'T MISS

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

DON'T MISS

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

DON'T MISS

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

UP NEXT

US Intelligence Finding Shows China Surging Equipment Sales to Russia to Help War Effort in Ukraine

UP NEXT

A Near-Total Ban on Abortion Has Supercharged the Political Dynamics of Arizona, a Key Swing State

UP NEXT

House Advances Reauthorization of US Spy Program as GOP Upheaval Threatens Final Passage

UP NEXT

Tennessee Lawmakers Send Bill to Ban First-Cousin Marriages to Governor

UP NEXT

More Aid Is Supposed to Be Entering the Gaza Strip. Why Isn’t It Helping?

UP NEXT

Wife of Julian Assange Says Biden’s Comments Mean Case Could Be Moving in the Right Direction

UP NEXT

Trump Says Jewish Voters Backing Biden ‘Should Have Their Head Examined’

UP NEXT

Taxes Are on the November Ballot in Monumental CA Showdown

UP NEXT

Austin Tells Congress Israel Is Taking Steps to Boost Aid to Gaza as Lawmakers Question US Support

UP NEXT

Appeal Court Rules Fong Can Stay on CA-20 Congressional Ballot

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

4 hours ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

15 hours ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

16 hours ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

17 hours ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

18 hours ago

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

18 hours ago

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

18 hours ago

Israeli Settlers Rampage Through a West Bank Village, Killing 1 Palestinian and Wounding 25

21 hours ago

US Intelligence Finding Shows China Surging Equipment Sales to Russia to Help War Effort in Ukraine

21 hours ago

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Land Before Time Litter’s Journey

22 hours ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

When Sacramento changed its plan to demolish a homeless encampment on a vacant lot on Colfax Street, instead offering the homeless occupants...

2 hours ago

2 hours ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

3 hours ago

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

3 hours ago

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

4 hours ago

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

15 hours ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

16 hours ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

17 hours ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

18 hours ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend