N.Y. county GOP leaders call for Rep. Santos’s resignation over fabrications

N.Y. county GOP leaders call for Rep. Santos’s resignation over fabrications

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Nassau County, N.Y., Republicans on Wednesday called on Rep. George Santos (RN.Y.) to resign immediately after the newly elected lawmaker admitted he fabricated key details of his background and failed to explain questions about his campaign finances. his.

Chairman Joseph G. Cairo Jr. of the Nassau County Republican Committee, which had initially endorsed Santos’ candidacy, said Wednesday: “George Santos’ campaign last year was a campaign of fraud, lies and fabrication” and added: “I am calling for his immediate resignation “.

Pressed by reporters in the corridors of the US Capitol, Santos said he would not resign.

Cairo was joined at the GOP headquarters on Long Island by several local GOP officials who echoed his call for their party member to resign just days after he was sworn in.

Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman (R) said, “When he called himself Jewish, that was ridiculous.” State Sen. Jack M. Martins (R) said, “These are not ornaments. These are lies, and called on Santos to be removed one way or another.

Nassau County Legislator Richard J. Nicolello said Santos’ lies “have done violence to the public trust.” Mayor Pamela D. Panzenbeck of Glen Cove said, “We were all cheated.”

Santos was elected in November to represent New York’s 3rd District, bringing back a crucial seat for the Republican Party. A firestorm ensued last month after the New York Times and others described apparent fabrications in Santos’ work and educational background and personal history.

“If I’ve let anyone down by embellishing my resume, I’m sorry,” Santos, who has denied any criminal wrongdoing in the United States or elsewhere, told WABC radio in New York.

In June 2020, Santos tweeted that he is the “nephew of Holocaust refugees”. This month, Jewish Insider cast doubt on that claim, noting that the dates cited by Santos for his grandparents’ departure from Belgium to Brazil do not match, nor do immigration records support his version of his family’s history. . The Republican Jewish Coalition, which featured Santos as part of its November annual conference in Las Vegas, denounced his false claims about his heritage and said “he will not be welcome at any future RJC events.”

In March, Santos said in a podcast interview that he was “raised Catholic, born into a Jewish family — a very, very confusing religious background.” He recently told the New York Post, “I never claimed to be Jewish.”

Democrats have called for his resignation, and two fellow New York Democrats, Reps. Ritchie Torres and Daniel S. Goldman, filed an ethics complaint on Tuesday. Republican leaders, including House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), have said Santos’ case will be handled internally.

A complaint filed Monday with the Federal Election Commission accused Santos of widespread campaign finance violations. The alleged wrongdoing includes disguising the true source of his campaign funding, misrepresenting his campaign expenses, and using campaign resources to cover personal expenses.

The complaint, filed by the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center, could prompt a formal investigation of Santos by federal regulators, the latest chapter in a saga testing the limits of political lying.

At the Nassau County event on Wednesday. Cairo said he had not spoken to McCarthy about Santos. Cairo said Santos submitted a resume, answered the organization’s questions and noted “he was recommended by Queens County” although he noted he was “not enthusiastic.” Cairo also said the organization will change the way it vets candidates, adding, “We have to really investigate the background.”

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