Nov 25, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Santos lashes out at colleagues as he stares down expulsion

Rep. George Santos. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) said Friday he won't resign from Congress but acknowledged he will likely be expelled as he lobbed salacious accusations at colleagues and called the chair of the Ethics Committee a "p***y".

Why it matters: A growing number of lawmakers in both parties who previously voted against expelling Santos have flipped and now say they will vote to remove him following an explosive Ethics Committee report.

  • Santos said he knows he is "going to get expelled when this expulsion resolution goes to the floor," adding: "I've done the math over and over, and it doesn't look really good."

Driving the news: In an X space hosted by journalist Monica Matthews, Santos said he is "not going to resign" because "[if] I resign, I admit everything that's on that report."

  • Santos said he will defend himself "to the end of time," criticizing the Ethics Committee probe as biased and goading Chair Michael Guest (R-Miss.) to "stop being a p***y" and force a vote on his expulsion resolution.
  • Rep. Robert Garcia (D-Calif.) joined the space and urged Santos to make a "direct apology" to voters and resign because "we're going to vote to expel you George."

The backdrop: The Ethics Committee's 56-page report said the panel's bipartisan investigation found a "complex web of unlawful activity involving Representative Santos' campaign, personal, and business finances."

  • The report accused Santos of fraud, stealing from his campaign and falsifying campaign and personal finance reports.
  • The allegations are on top of the nearly two dozen federal criminal charges Santos faces from two indictments, including wire fraud, money laundering and theft of public funds, to which he has pleaded not guilty.

The intrigue: Santos threw out wild allegations against unnamed colleagues in an effort to cast his alleged extraordinary wrongdoing as the norm.

  • Santos said Congress is "felons galore" and filled with "people with all sorts of shiesty backgrounds."
  • He called his colleagues "a bunch of hypocrites," accusing them of extramarital affairs, getting drunk with lobbyists and then missing votes due to hangovers, and handing out voting cards like "candy" to allow others to vote on their behalf.

What's we're watching: Despite his ongoing legal troubles and likely expulsion, Santos said he is not ruling out another run for office and said he plans to stay involved in politics in some capacity.

  • "I definitely will not be going away ... elected office is not off the table," he said, though he added that he won't run any time soon and he likely will never run for office again in New York.

What's next: Garcia told Axios he plans to force a vote on his resolution to expel Santos "the second that the House opens" on Tuesday, ensuring a vote on an expulsion before the end of next week.

  • Republicans have looked to Guest's resolution as the primary expulsion measure, but Garcia said he believes his will be able to garner the necessary Republican support to pass.
  • One House Republican predicted to Axios that all but a few dozen Republicans will vote to expel Santos — putting the number around 180.
  • A spokesperson for Guest did not respond to a request for comment.
Go deeper