Rep. George Santos reverses course to skip out on House committees
Washington DC - Rep. George Santos told fellow Republican lawmakers he will agree to not sit on any committees amid controversies over his serial lies about his background, education, and finances.
Santos made the pledge, which is unlikely to quiet rising demands for his resignation, at a closed door meeting of the Republican caucus.
The embattled freshman Long Island lawmaker had been assigned to sit on the relatively low-profile science and small business committees.
“He has asked to reserve his seats on both committees until he is properly cleared for both personal and campaign finance investigations,” said Naysa Woomer, a spokeswoman for Santos.
Santos has been facing immense pressure to resign but insists he will not step down over his outrageous campaign of falsehoods.
A new poll says 78% of voters in his NY-03 district want him to resign compared to just 13% who say he should stay in office to serve out his two-year term. Even 71% of Republicans want him to see him gone for good.
The Brazilian immigrant portrayed himself as a trailblazing gay conservative entrepreneur as he pulled off a big upset to grab a Democratic-leaning district on the North Shore and parts of Queens.
But he was quickly exposed as a fraud and admitted lying about working for big investment banks and attending Baruch College, where he bizarrely claimed he was a star on the volleyball team.
Unscrambling Rep. Santos' web of lies
Santos even claimed to be half-Jewish when he isn’t and that his grandparents fled the Holocaust when they didn’t.
The most damaging potential fibs are those concerning Santos’s personal finances and his campaign funding, which could wind up violating laws. State and federal authorities are investigating, along with Brazilian prosecutors who are looking into an old bad check scam.
He even scored a big bucks donation from the cousin of a Russian oligarch pal of Vladimir Putin who was once named as a go-between in the Stormy Daniels hush money scheme involving former President Donald Trump.
The House Ethics Committee is also investigating Santos, but any probe would likely result in a slap on the wrist.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has so far stood by Santos, mostly because he holds a razor-thin majority and does not want to risk the likely loss of the seat to a Democrat if Santos resigns and forces a special election.
Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS