As we enter the third year of Donald Trump and his supporters still making the false claim that the 2020 election was rigged, it comes as no surprise that GOP hopefuls in Congress no longer fear reprisals for their spread misinformation.
What surprises congressman-elect George Santos most is not only that the New York Republican was willing to openly spread falsehoods about his personal and professional history during his campaign for public office, but also the extent to which he was willing was to do this.
Santos, who was elected to New York’s 3rd Circuit in November and is yet to take the oath of Congress on January 3, admitted he had made a number of claims about his life after details were initially reported by The New York Times.
Santos admitted that he has not worked at financial firms Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, nor has he graduated from Baruch College. He also said he doesn’t own 13 properties and actually owes one of his landlords several thousand dollars in rent.
Santos, a Catholic, was also accused of exaggerating his Jewish ancestry, although he claimed so New York Post he only described himself as “Jewish”.
Hank Sheinkopf, a New York-based Democratic strategist, said the problem of the lack of a veto for congressional candidates meant Santos was only spotted weeks before he took office.
Sheinkopf also believed that the congressman-elect may have been inspired by four years of the Trump administration and subsequent years of election denial to use a similar playbook when it comes to telling the truth while breaking into the world of politics.
“Why not? I mean, there’s nothing to suggest he couldn’t get away with it,” Sheinkopf said news week.
In a 2021 interview with former President Lara Trump’s daughter-in-law, Santos said he was inspired to run for Congress given Trump’s success in the world of politics.
Santos isn’t the first Trump-inspired political hopeful who may have ended up unfit for office.
During the midterm election, a slew of Trump-supporting, voting-waiver, and MAGA candidates lost their respective races, resulting in Republicans failing to seize control of the Senate and instead achieving only a razor-thin majority in the House of Representatives in the expected “red wave.”
While Santos faces mounting calls to step down before he enters the new Congress on Jan. 3, the Republican Party itself has been largely silent on the issue.
The problem for the GOP now is that they must continue to show support for Santos, even though he admits he “embellished” some details of his life in order to hold on to the tiny majority they have only just achieved.
“They’ve gone up nine seats and Santos is key to maintaining that,” Sheinkopf said news week. “That’s the distance between them and the Democrats or they lose control of the lower house. You won’t give it up that easily. They’re just going to let it slide without doing much, because the question is: Can the Republicans now afford to lose this seat? The answer is no.”
news week Santos has reached out for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/george-santos-lies-donald-trump-gop-1770401 George Santos is Donald Trump brought to his logical endpoint