It doesn’t seem likely George Santos will be serving a second term in Congress, marking the second Congress in a row in which a right-wing figure has quickly gained notoriety — and exited. (Madison Cawthorn was similarly situated.)
A new poll of the 3rd Congressional District in New York conducted by Siena College for Newsday, which is a publication on New York’s Long Island, reveals that 78 percent of those in the district, which is represented by Santos, believe he should resign. The number reflects the responses of registered voters — and includes a large portion of Republicans supportive of his proposed exit. A full 71 percent of Republicans backed Santos resigning, as have GOP officials like the chair of the Nassau County GOP and the chair of the state Republican Party of New York, who’s also a Congressman. Santos, who got low-profile spots on House committees, which his constituents also broadly opposed, has predictably resisted calls for him to leave Congress.
Among those who voted for Santos, 63 percent said in Newsday’s poll they wouldn’t have done so if they had then the information about the Congressman they now possess. Santos, a Republican serving his first term in the House, was caught lying about a long list of elements of his life, from where he worked and went to school to his family history. He’s claimed grandparents of his survived the Holocaust despite no evidence they were born in Europe, and he said in an interview he got two knee replacement surgeries in evident connection to a supposedly star turn as a volleyball player at Baruch College, which he never actually attended. Who would lie like that?
He is also facing financial questions, like where on earth the hundreds of thousands of dollars he originally said he personally loaned his 2022 campaign originated — and the origin of the tens of thousands of dollars in donations to his 2020 campaign reports suggest may have been given with false personal details. Among the examples of that problem is that thousands of dollars in campaign donations were reported in the names of two New Jersey residents whose claimed address doesn’t actually exist. There’s no record of anyone by their names living in the U.S., either. Accepting donations with false identifying info attached is a felony criminal offense, and Santos is currently under what seems to be federal criminal investigation for matters related to his campaign finances.
A failed candidate for the House who lost in a primary to Cawthorn but was endorsed by Mark Meadows and Trump was criminally charged for — and agreed to plead guilty to — accepting such a donation, constituting $25,000 in 2019 that in actuality originated with a member of the then-candidate’s family.