Congressman Santos Won’t Answer Questions; House Speaker Vote Looms – NBC New York

What to Know

  • Rep.-Elect George Santos has steadfastly refused calls to resign regardless of a number of investigations into his marketing campaign funds and an evolving sequence of lies that contact just about all features of his life
  • The Republican, elected to signify NY’s third congressional district, refused to remark to reporters late Tuesday morning as he blew by a media scrum en path to his Washington, D.C., workplace; he has acknowledged “embellishing” his life story and stated, “We do stupid things in life”
  • Federal and native prosecutors are trying into his marketing campaign funds, whereas the NY legal professional basic can also be trying into allegations — and district attorneys in each Queens and Lengthy Island are evaluating whether or not he might have damaged any legal guidelines

Tuesday didn’t go easily for embattled Lengthy Island Rep.-elect George Santos. Then once more, the identical could possibly be stated for his political get together.

The Republican elected to signify New York’s third congressional district was set to be sworn in on Tuesday regardless of a burgeoning spiral of controversy — from federal and native investigations into his marketing campaign spending to lies about his family history, resume and education and, most lately, apparently utilizing that ceremonial oath-taking as a personal fundraiser.

To start out the day, he refused to remark to reporters late Tuesday morning whereas hurriedly blowing by a media scrum, main them on one thing of a chase en path to his Washington, D.C., workplace.

After racing by means of what appeared, at occasions, to be the underbelly of the Longworth Workplace Constructing, one among three constructed for the U.S. House of Representatives, he went up an escalator and he and his employees closed — and locked — his workplace door.

Later within the night, Santos posted a press release stating that he had been sworn in by the Speaker of the House. Nevertheless, no swearing-in ever befell — not for him, nor any of the newly elected House members.

Why? As a result of for the primary time in a century, there was no Speaker of the House elected after the GOP failed thrice to elect get together chief Kevin McCarthy to the publish. Republicans adjourned in disarray Tuesday night time, ending a raucous first day by which Santos was photographed sitting by himself whereas within the House chambers, seeing scrolling on his telephone as his get together handled infighting. Santos solid a vote for McCarthy throughout all three votes.

Very similar to how he ran from reporters on the Capitol, the 34-year-old Santos has been working from mounting calls to resign over the previous few weeks.

He has denied that he’ll step apart, at the same time as heaps of alleged mistruths, partial or outright lies involving a variety of topics from his mom to schooling to job historical past, sexual orientation and now a pay-to-attend swearing-in, cloud what initially was lauded as a fantastic victory for the brazenly homosexual Republican who flipped a Lengthy Island House seat lengthy held by the other get together.

The embattled Lengthy Island Republican refused to reply reporter questions amid his ever-expanding spiral of controversies.

He was seen as one of many GOP’s few vivid spots in what was in any other case an underwhelming midterm election. However as studies started to emerge that he had lied about having Jewish ancestry, a profession at high Wall Avenue companies and a university diploma, Santos became a distraction to Republicans getting ready to take management of the House.

Whereas some fellow Republicans have referred to as for ethics investigations or for Santos to resign, GOP House leaders, together with McCarthy, have notably remained silent. Some lawmakers are involved that he’s ready to take workplace underneath a cloud of uncertainty.

“Santos represents, I believe, a grave national security risk,” stated Rep.-elect Pat Ryan, who represents New York’s nineteenth congressional district. “Every member of Congress gets a top secret security clearance. This is something I held as a combat veteran as an intelligence officer. He should not have access to that classified information.”

For his half, Santos apologized for his fabrications however downplayed them as “sins” over embellishing his resume, telling The New York Submit that “we do stupid things in life.”

Santos’ monetary disclosure kinds present that he accrued a fast fortune regardless of current monetary issues and that he spent massive quantities of marketing campaign funds on journey and inns.

Federal prosecutors in New York have began to look at Santos’ background and his monetary dealings. The New York legal professional basic’s workplace stated it’s trying into the allegations surrounding Santos, whereas native district attorneys’ places of work in Queens and Lengthy Island have additionally stated they’re reviewing whether or not he broke any legal guidelines.

Congressman-elect George Santos is full-steam forward with preps for his swearing in. Chris Glorioso studies.

The New York Occasions uncovered data in Brazil that present Santos was the topic of a felony investigation there in 2008 over allegations that he used stolen checks to purchase gadgets at a clothes store within the metropolis of Niteroi, which is close to Rio de Janeiro. On the time, Santos would have been 19. The Occasions quoted native prosecutors as saying the case was dormant as a result of Santos had by no means appeared in court docket.

Santos has denied that he was being sought by authorities in South America.

However in a press release Tuesday, state prosecutors in Rio de Janeiro stated now that Santos’ location is thought they’ll petition to reopen the case.

Democrats in Congress are anticipated to pursue a number of avenues towards Santos, together with a possible criticism with the Federal Election Fee and introducing a decision to expel him as soon as he’s a sitting member.

Till 2020, Santos had no belongings and an earnings of $55,000 from LinkBridge Traders, in line with monetary disclosure statements filed with the clerk of the House.

Two years later, in the same submitting, Santos reported earnings between $1 million and $5 million for every of 2022 and 2021 — all coming from the Devolder Group, of which he had complete curiosity. He described the entity as a “capital intro consulting company.”

Federal marketing campaign data present that he loaned his marketing campaign greater than $700,000.

The North Shore Chief, a neighborhood newspaper on Lengthy Island, raised questions earlier than the election about Santos’ funds and marketing campaign spending, a report that drew little discover on the time. In announcing it was endorsing his opponent, the newspaper cited Santos’ habits and referred to as him “sketchy” and “most likely just a fabulist — a fake.”

However his statements about background, his monetary disclosures and marketing campaign spending didn’t appeal to widespread consideration till December, when The New York Times examined the narrative that Santos offered to voters throughout his marketing campaign.

Since then, Santos has admitted mendacity about working for Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, in addition to having earned a level in finance and economics from Baruch Faculty in New York.

Past his resume, Santos invented a life story that has additionally come underneath query, together with claims that his grandparents “fled Jewish persecution in Ukraine, settled in Belgium, and again fled persecution during WWII.”

Throughout his marketing campaign, he referred to himself as “a proud American Jew.”

He backtracked on that declare, saying he by no means supposed to assert Jewish heritage, which could have raised his attraction amongst his district’s vital ranks of Jewish voters.

“I never claimed to be Jewish,” Santos instructed the Submit. “I am Catholic. Because I learned my maternal family had a Jewish background I said I was ‘Jew-ish.’”

Again within the district he was elected to signify, a possible political rival organized a protest exterior Santos’ one time marketing campaign headquarters in Oyster Bay on Tuesday. The message was a easy one: Santos is just not match to serve in Congress.

“George Santos is not a congressman. He is a fugitive,” stated Nassau County Legislator Joshua Lafazan, a Democrat. “We’ll show up to every event he has. He will have no safe harbor in this district.”

Whereas one Nice Neck resident who spoke on the rally has put forth an on-line petition demanding Santos both resign or be faraway from workplace, it seems neither is more likely to occur as of now. James Pattern, a constitutional legislation professor at Hofstra College, stated the fact is that any political or authorized effort to take away Santos in all probability gained’t bear fruit earlier than the tip of his two yr congressional time period.

“Once he is a member of Congress, he will have the ability to run out the clock on his two year term,” stated Pattern.

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