Putting the ‘Con’ in Congress

Controversial freshman congressman George Santos has come under fire following multiple admitted lies about his past and resume.

As the 118th Congress swore in a new razor-thin Republican majority, all eyes were on newly-elected congressman George Santos (NY-3). The freshman congressman had come under harsh scrutiny from both sides of the political aisle as a myriad of falsehoods about his background were uncovered by the New York Times, prompting fellow Republicans to turn against him. Less than two weeks after he was sworn in, the Nassau County Republican Committee, which Santos represents in his district, held a press conference in which they labeled Santos a joke, disgrace and pathological liar, demanding his immediate resignation from Congress. 

“George Santos’ campaign last year was a campaign of deceit, lies and fabrication,” said Nassau County GOP chairman Joseph Cairo. He continued, “he’s disgraced the House of Representatives and we do not consider him one of our congresspeople.” 

Santos, who represents New York’s third congressional district, has become the subject of multiple investigative inquiries by state and federal officials. The House Ethics Committee opened a formal subcommittee to examine several allegations against the congressmen, saying in a press statement released on March 2 that they would investigate whether Santos “engaged in unlawful activity with respect to his 2022 congressional campaign; failed to properly disclose required information on statements filed with the House; violated federal conflict of interest laws in connection with his role in a firm providing fiduciary services; and/or engaged in sexual misconduct towards an individual seeking employment in his congressional office.”  

Santos has been temporarily recused from his duties on the two House committees he serves on, saying he will fully cooperate with the investigation until its conclusion. The congressman has denied all wrongdoing, but admits to multiple fabrications, or as he called them, “embellishments” about his background. 

“I don’t know that anyone has lied to the extent that George Santos has lied,” said government teacher Justin Nelson. “Whether or not he should still be a congressman I think has to be brought into question,” Nelson added. 

Santos has stood defiant, saying he will not resign in spite of the growing bipartisan calls for his resignation. In a tweet sent on Feb. 14, Santos said, “let me be very clear, I’m not leaving, I’m not hiding and I am NOT backing down. I will continue to work for #NY03 and no amount of Twitter trolling will stop me.” He has since filed to run for re-election.