Rep. George Santos Under Investigation by House Ethics Subcommittee
The House ethics committee announced on Thursday that it has established a subcommittee to investigate whether Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) “engaged in unlawful activity with respect to his 2022 congressional campaign; failed to properly disclose required information on statements filed with the House; violated federal conflict of interest laws in connection with his role in a firm providing fiduciary services; and/or engaged in sexual misconduct towards an individual seeking employment in his congressional office.” The committee also noted that “the mere fact of establishing an Investigative Subcommittee does not itself indicate that any violation has occurred.”
Rep. David Joyce (R-Ohio) will serve as chair of the investigative subcommittee, and Rep. Susan Wild (D-Pa.) will serve as its ranking Democrat. Reps. John Rutherford (R-Fla.) and Glenn Ivey (D-Md.) will also sit on the panel. Santos's verified Twitter account stated the congressman “is fully cooperating. There will be no further comment made at this time.”
Santos has been under scrutiny for a myriad of falsehoods about his background, and questions about his 2022 congressional campaign. In December, a New York Times investigation found he misrepresented numerous aspects of his career. Santos confessed to “embellishing” his resume, yet more facts about his history have gone on to be revealed.
The dishonesty seen during Santos' initial period in office is comparable to that of some of Washington D.C.'s most experienced political strategists. In December, it was revealed by The New York Times that Santos had made false statements about his past. The congressman had falsely claimed to be enrolled at prestigious universities and had not been truthful about his past employment at major financial institutions. According to a report from Forward, Santos had identified as a “proud American Jew” in political documents, asserting that his family was made up of Holocaust survivors, even though genealogical records showed otherwise.
The greater risk, however, could come from a closer examination of his campaign finances. According to CNN, late in 2020, federal prosecutors in New York were conducting an investigation into matters concerning the wealth and loans exceeding $700,000 that were given to his victorious 2022 campaign. Santos has emphatically declared that the funds he contributed to the campaign were legitimately obtained. A campaign watchdog organization has submitted a complaint, questioning the origin of the considerable financial benefit. In 2018, Santos's salary was reported to be $55,000 and he had no assets.
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