Investigations into U.S. Rep. George Santos will quickly send the embattled freshman who repeatedly lied about his background out of Congress, a spokesperson for U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree said Thursday.
“His dishonesty tarnishes and distracts from the important work constituents trust members to do on their behalf,” Pingree spokesperson Victoria Bonney said.
Santos, a Republican from New York, has told numerous lies about his life story, ranging from education and work history to having family members die in the Holocaust.
On Wednesday, the Nassau County GOP called on him to immediately resign because of a campaign filled with “deceit, lies and fabrication,” with the chair saying Santos once told him he was a volleyball star at a college that the congressman never attended.
Now that he has been seated, expulsion by two-thirds of the House would be the only avenue to remove him from the House. Two Maine Democrats, Pingree of the 1st District and Jared Golden of the 2nd District, would have a say in that vote, though Republicans control the House and no member has been expelled since 2002 after a bribery conviction.
Santos also faces investigation from federal and county officials and Brazilian officials plan on reviving charges related to a stolen checkbook from over a decade ago. Santos has refused to step down and was welcomed into his party’s conference by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of California, who told reporters on Thursday that Santos “a long way to go to earn trust.”
Santos’ lies about his resume weren’t widely known until after he defeated Democrat Rob Zimmerman by 22,000 votes last November when they were reported by The New York Times in December.
Pingree stopped short of calling for expulsion, while a spokesperson for Sen. Susan Collins, the lone Republican in Maine’s delegation, said “the chaotic and embarrassing situation is really an issue for the House of Representatives” and noted only it can discipline its members.
Golden said he is concerned about the Santos allegations but is focused on his work.
“It is the people of New York’s [3rd] District who should drive the conversation about what to do about it,” Golden spokesman Nick Zeller said. “Jared is focused on working across the aisle to get things done for Maine’s [2nd] District right now.”