Nassau County GOP Representative George Santos was recently sworn into Congress, which made him the first openly gay GOP candidate to win an election for the position. His time on Capitol Hill will likely be cut short due to his long trail of lies surrounding his personal and professional life. Today, he trends on TikTok and Twitter as his own party calls for his resignation.
A Look at Santos’ Campaign Lies
The New York Times first found that Santos lied about his educational background, which included a Summa Cum Laude Bachelor’s Degree from Baruch College, and an MBA from New York University. Santos reportedly also lied about his work experience, including his positions at several major firms on Wall Street.
On a personal level, Santos claimed that he was of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, and that his grandparents were Holocaust survivors. This turned out to be completely untrue, as his grandparents were born and raised in Brazil. He also did not publicly disclose his marriage and subsequent divorce from a woman. The divorce was finalized just twelve days prior to his initial 2020 bid for Congress.
The IRS also has no records of the charity organizations he claimed to run. Additionally, there is evidence of Santos’ legal troubles in Brazil. The Hill reports that when asked about his resume, Santos said, “I’m embarrassed and sorry for having embellished my resume. We do stupid things in life.”
Today, leaders of the Nassau County Republican Party called for Santos’ resignation. Committee Chairman Joseph G. Cairo said in a news conference, “He deceived voters. His lies were not mere fibs. He disgraced the House of Representatives. He’s not welcome here at Republican headquarters.”
Santos maintains his refusal to resign, despite the formal complaint filed with the House Ethics Committee that will likely lead to an investigation. Lawmakers and media professionals have expressed shock at Santos apparent shamelessness on Twitter.
In response Santos said, “No problem. I’m happy to re-sign up to be a congressman again. This is fun!” https://t.co/7dALzXSpX1
— W. Kamau Bell (@wkamaubell) January 11, 2023
Newly elected Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy has refrained from commenting on the George Santos controversy at this time. Though Santos poses an ethical issue to the GOP, his resignation could also risk losing a seat to the Democratic party. A special election in a Democrat-leaning county could prove a difficult win for yet another Republican candidate. Some were quick to point out that this could be the reason behind McCarthy’s silence.
HOLY SH*T: The Nassau County GOP is calling on George Santos to resign.
His own party says he needs to leave Congress… and what does Kevin McCarthy do?
— Jo (@JoJoFromJerz) January 11, 2023
Others on TikTok were quick to point out the nearly humorous absurdity of the situation, turning Santos into a meme-able character. The Daily Show’s TikTok account shared a clip of Santos with Radiohead’s hit song “Creep” playing in the background.
Santos is still yet to resign from Congress, despite the increasing light being shed on his campaign fabrications. You can now view an official copy of his “embellished resumé” from the NYT here.