George Santos Is Under Investigation by House Ethics Committee, Speaker McCarthy Confirms
Sipa via AP Images George Santos
New York Rep. George Santos is under investigation by the House Ethics Committee, Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy confirmed Tuesday.
Speaking to CNN, McCarthy said: "Ethics is moving through, and if Ethics finds something, we'll take action. Right now, we're not allowing him to be on committees from the standpoint of the questions that have arisen."
Santos recently told colleagues he would temporarily resign from his assignments on the Small Business and Science Committees while various investigations into his past play out.
The investigation by the House Ethics Committee marks the latest of many probes surrounding Santos, who has been mired in controversy since he admitted to "embellishing" parts of his career, family history and personal life.
McCarthy previously said that he was sticking by the embattled congressman, but has noted that would change if a committee investigation found Santos to have broken the law.
"If for some way when we go through Ethics and he has broken the law, then we will remove him, but it's not my role," McCarthy told reporters last month. "I believe in the rule of law. A person's innocent until proven guilty."
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Alejandra Villa Loarca/Newsday RM via Getty George Santos
Santos came under fire in December, when The New York Times reported that a large portion of his biography could not be substantiated. The outlet alleged that he misled voters about his level of education, previous jobs and family ties to the Holocaust, news that earned bipartisan condemnation in recent days for misrepresenting himself.
In an interview with the New York Post, the congressman admitted he lied about working at Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, as he had previously asserted, and revealed that he had also embellished his education, noting that he did not attend Baruch College or New York University.
In the weeks since the Times' bombshell story about Santos, a number of other allegations about Santos have surfaced, including that he once claimed to be a college volleyball star despite not attending college and that he once falsely claimed to be an actor who appeared on Hannah Montana and in feature films.
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But more serious questions about Santos' background remain, including those about his finances and the source of his campaign funding.
In 2020, when Santos launched his first run for the House, he stated in a financial disclosure that he had no assets and no earned income. But his financial situation appeared to have markedly improved by the time he decided to launch a second run for the House in 2022, with Federal Election Commission filings showing he lent at least $700,000 to his campaign, and $27,000 to his political action committee.
Various non-partisan groups and investigators are now pushing to uncover the source of those funds and to determine whether Santos may have used campaign resources to cover personal expenses, like his rent, or falsified the disclosure of day-to-day campaign expenses.
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Santos, who was elected in November and sworn into office in January, is currently under investigation by both the Nassau County District Attorney's Office and federal investigators, with other probes also reportedly ongoing.
Late last month, The Washington Post reported that the DOJ asked the Federal Election Commission to hold off on taking any action against Santos — a signal that the DOJ itself may be investigating the Republican's campaign finances, which have raised numerous questions.
Federal investigators are also reportedly looking into claims that Santos once scammed a Navy veteran out of $3,000 meant for his ailing service dog, CNN and Politico reported earlier this month.