Santos loses GOP help forward of expulsion vote after ethics report

Santos loses GOP help forward of expulsion vote after ethics report

Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., leaves a Home Republican Convention assembly on the speaker of the Home discussions in Longworth Constructing on Tuesday, October 10, 2023.

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Home Republicans who beforehand opposed efforts to oust GOP Rep. George Santos are actually lining as much as expel him after a scathing ethics report accused the embattled New York lawmaker of brazen marketing campaign fraud and theft.

Nevertheless it stays to be seen if sufficient of them will activate their fellow Republican as a way to kick him out of Congress, a transfer that requires the help of two-thirds of the chamber.

The report, launched Thursday morning by the Home Ethics Committee, discovered that Santos “sought to fraudulently exploit each facet of his Home candidacy for his personal private monetary revenue.”

The 35-year-old freshman “blatantly stole from his marketing campaign,” deceiving donors and submitting pretend marketing campaign loans whereas sustaining a “collection of lies” about his background and expertise, the report alleged.

The report additionally accuses Santos of utilizing cash meant as marketing campaign donations to “enrich himself,” together with by spending greater than $4,000 at luxurious clothes retailer Hermes and making purchases on grownup cam web site OnlyFans.

Santos, who was already dealing with associated legal expenses in New York federal court docket, introduced later Thursday that he wouldn’t search reelection in 2024. He has pleaded not responsible in that case, which is scheduled to go to trial subsequent September.

“I’ll proceed on my mission to serve my constituents up till I’m allowed,” Santos wrote on X shortly after the report got here out. “I’ll nevertheless NOT be in search of re-election for a second time period in 2024 as my household deserves higher than to be below the gun from the press on a regular basis.”

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Santos has beforehand rejected calls from each events for him to resign earlier than the top of his time period.

An effort to expel Santos on Nov. 1 failed on the Home flooring in a 179-213 vote — although 24 Republicans voted for the decision, which was led by a bunch of New York GOP members. In Could, the GOP-majority Home prevented a Democratic try and take away Santos by voting to refer the matter to the Home Ethics panel.

The third time will be the attraction: Home Ethics Committee Chairman Michael Visitor, R-Miss., plans to introduce one other decision to expel Santos from Congress, the chairman’s chief of employees instructed CNBC on Thursday.

Any such decision won’t come to a vote earlier than Nov. 28 on the earliest, because the Home is in recess.

Visitor had voted towards the newest try and take away Santos from Congress. His committee had famous a day earlier than that vote that it will announce an replace on its probe of Santos by mid-November.

With the panel’s report now public, Visitor and a rising variety of different Republican lawmakers seem able to vote to eject certainly one of their very own.

“I didn’t vote previously to expel George as a result of I did not consider there was due course of,” Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., mentioned Thursday on MSNBC, however “I believe he is been given the honest due course of now.”

“I purposely waited for the outcomes of the Ethics Committee’s report to come back out earlier than passing judgment,” mentioned Rep. Greg Murphy, R-N.C. “Nevertheless, given its findings of the info of this case, I discover his habits reprehensible and never worthy of a member of Congress. I’ll vote to expel him.”

Three Republicans from Iowa, Reps. Zach Nunn, Ashley Hinson and Mariannette Miller-Meeks, joined the requires Santos to go away Congress, as did Reps. Stephanie Bice, R-Okla., Kelly Armstrong, R-N.D., and Dusty Johnson, R-S.D.

Former Home Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who struggled to corral a razor-thin GOP Home majority, had refused to affix requires Santos to resign.

His successor, Rep. Mike Johnson, R-La., had initially taken the identical stance: “We now have no margin for error,” he mentioned in October, “and so, George Santos is due due course of, proper?”

In a press release Thursday night, a spokesman for Johnson known as the ethics report’s findings “very troubling.”

“As members from each events, members of the Ethics Committee and Consultant Santos return to Congress after the Thanksgiving break, Speaker Johnson encourages all concerned to contemplate the very best pursuits of the establishment as this matter is addressed additional,” the assertion mentioned.

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