Nov 30, 2023 - Politics & Policy

George Santos introduces expulsion resolution in potential final act in Congress

 (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

Ahead of a vote that could make him the first House lawmaker to be expelled in more than 20 years, Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) is introducing an expulsion resolution on Thursday targeting a House lawmaker from his own state.

Why it matters: Santos — who faces an uphill battle in a vote to remove him from office following a scathing House Ethics report — is seeking an expulsion vote on Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.), who pulled a fire alarm in one of the House office buildings.

  • Multiple GOP lawmakers considered offering a censure or expulsion resolution following Bowman's actions with the fire alarm, but ultimately Republicans opted against bringing a resolution to the floor.
  • The resolution, obtained by Axios, states that Bowman "knowing and willingly gave a false fire alarm in the House Cannon Office Building" and noted he "pleaded guilty."

The other side: "No one in Congress, or anywhere in America, takes soon-to-be former Congressman George Santos seriously," Bowman said in a statement on Thursday.

  • "This is just another meaningless stunt in his long history of cons, antics, and outright fraud."

The intrigue: While Santos has weathered two attempts to oust him from his seat following reports and admissions that he falsified his resume and misused official funds, a mounting number of Republicans have voiced that they will support his ouster citing the House Ethics Committee report.

  • Santos has been highly critical of the report into his activities, arguing that it was "designed to smear" him and was politically motivated.
  • Some conservatives have argued that ousting Santos ahead of any conviction sets a dangerous precedent, with some noting Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) remains in Congress despite being charged with bribery offenses.

New York Republicans have made the case that Santos' controversies will hurt vulnerable members in the Empire State.

  • But some leading Republicans fear that ousting Santos could lead to a smaller majority due to potential early retirement announcements.
  • Santos has acknowledged that he is unlikely to prevail in the latest attempt to remove him despite Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) voicing that he has reservations about the precedent it sets.
  • Bowman ultimately paid a $1,000 fine and wrote an apology letter for the incident following the misdemeanor charge.

The big picture: The House is slated to vote to expel Santos on Friday, with more than 90 Republicans expected to support the measure.

Editor's note: This article has been updated to add a statement from Rep. Bowman.

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