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Former New York Republican George Santos seems to be turning a new leaf, exiting a life of (alleged) crime and deception in favor of an honest day’s work on Cameo, the platform offering personalized messages by mid-tier celebrities.
The disgraced politician, who was expelled from Congress’s lower chamber last Friday, is already making more than six figures off the platform, according to Semafor. That puts him on pace to make more than his old congressional salary of $174,000, through Cameo alone.
In just 48 hours after creating his profile, the fabulist former congressman has reached a popularity rivaling some of the platform’s biggest stars, raking in thousands of requests for $200 to $300 videos averaging a minute or less.
Cameo’s founder and CEO, Steven Galanis, told the outlet that he expects Santos to be “an absolute whale.”
“Sarah Jessica Parker, Bon Jovi—he’s putting numbers up like that,” Galanis said.
The moment is so irresistible that even other politicians have hopped on the Santos-Cameo bandwagon. Hours after Santos announced his new venture, Pennsylvania Senator John Fetterman tapped the “seasoned expert” to tell indicted New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez to “stay strong” amid foreign bribery allegations.
I thought my ethically-challenged colleague @BobMenendezNJ could use some encouragement given his substantial legal problems.
So, I approached a seasoned expert on the matter to give ‘Bobby from Jersey’ some advice. pic.twitter.com/y8iX55EyNi
— John Fetterman (@JohnFetterman) December 4, 2023
The upshot of all this is Santos—who lied about having a high-paying job working for Goldman Sachs or Citigroup and ultimately used stolen campaign money to bolster his Botox and designer goods binges—won’t be strapped for cash in his criminal trial, which is set to begin in September 2024. Santos faces 23 charges related to wire fraud, identity theft, and credit card fraud. He has pleaded not guilty to the first 13 charges announced in May and has since denied another 10 charges announced in a superseding indictment in October.
Still, that’s only half the battle, according to Santos. More important is his F-U legacy.
“Obviously there’s a monetary benefit,” Santos told Semafor. “I’m not here doing it for charity—but the other aspect is to remind these assholes who think they’re holier-than-thou that they will be forgotten in history and I will live forever, period.”
Santos’s transition to social media fame is one of the more unusual career pivots post-Congress, and interrupts what many believed would be the lawmaker’s quick jump to reality TV. For those still holding out for the drama king’s soul-fated appearance on Celebrity Big Brother, Santos has a reminder: “I am the most conservative member of the New York delegation.”