Embattled Rep. George Santos launches re-election bid
Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) on Monday announced plans to run for re-election for his Long Island-based House seat.
Why it matters: Santos' political future has been in serious doubt since revelations about widespread deceptions he made on the 2022 campaign trail prompted many in his own party to demand his resignation.
- He is also under federal, state and local investigation in addition to a probe by the House Ethics Committee.
Driving the news: "I'm proud to announce my candidacy to run for re-election and continue to serve the people of NY-3," Santos said in a statement on Monday.
- Santos said the district "need[s] a fighter who ... can serve the people fearlessly, and independent of local or national party influence," a nod to his defiance of calls from GOP colleagues in Congress and local party leaders for him to step down.
Reality check: Santos is expected to face a steep uphill battle in trying to keep his seat.
- He raised just $5,300 in the first three months of 2023, which was offset by $8,300 in refunds he made to donors, according to Federal Election Commission filings over the weekend.
- In addition to a poll in January showing the vast majority of his constituents want him to resign, a poll from Navigator Research last week found he has a 36 percentage point favorability deficit with Republicans nationally.
What we're watching: Santos has already attracted a Democratic foe in Nassau County legislator Josh Lafazan and a Republican primary challenge from veteran Kellen Curry, with many more likely to enter the fray.
- The district, which voted for President Biden by 10 points in 2020, is a top target for House Democrats.