House Ethics Chair introduces George Santos expulsion resolution

November 17, 2023

House Ethics Committee Chair Michael Guest (R-MS) on Friday morning introduced a resolution to expel embattled freshman Rep. George Santos (R-NY).

Guest had vowed Thursday to introduce the resolution following a scathing report from a special legislative subcommittee on Santos’ behavior while running for office in 2022. 

The a 56-page report, which can be read here, details a “complex web of unlawful activity involving Representative Santos’ campaign, personal, and business finances. Representative Santos sought to fraudulently exploit every aspect of his House candidacy for his own personal financial profit.”

For example, according to the subcommittee, Santos had a business that received $50,000 from donors that had been requested for political purposes, but the money was transferred to his personal account and spent on OnlyFans, Hermes, and Sephora.

“He blatantly stole from his campaign,” the subcommittee’s report goes on to say.

In a statement Friday, Ethics Chair Guest wrote, “The evidence uncovered in the Ethics Committee’s Investigative Subcommittee investigation is more than sufficient to warrant punishment and the most appropriate punishment, is expulsion. So, separate from the Committee process and my role as Chairman, I have filed an expulsion resolution.”

Guest could potentially call the expulsion measure to the floor as a privileged resolution when the House returns from Thanksgiving break. Such a move would set wheels in motion on a third such attempt to oust Santos from Congress.

Just over two weeks ago, House lawmakers rejected a measure to expel Santos that had been brought to the floor by several of his fellow New York Republicans, by a vote of 179-213.

And House Democrats unsuccessfully attempted to force a vote to expel Santos back in May.

But The Hill reports that the latest effort to expel Santos is already picking up steam, empowered by the Ethics report, with a number of lawmakers who opposed the previous expulsion efforts now saying they’ll support his removal. 

Santos’ troubles don’t end on Capitol Hill. He is facing a September 9, 2024 trial date for 23 separate felony counts, including wire fraud, identity theft, credit card theft, money laundering and falsely reporting to the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) that he had loaned his campaign $500,000; in fact, he hadn’t given anything while maintaining less than $8,000 in the bank.

Santos has pleaded not guilty to all counts. 

However, following Thursday’s release of the Ethics report, Santos—who had filed for reelection back in March—said that he won’t be running in 2024 after all. 

Read more exclusive news from Political IQ.

 

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