House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) admitted Monday that he “always had some questions” about the resume of Rep. George Santos (RN.Y.), the newly elected congressman who lied extensively on his references.
“I never knew everything about his resume or not, but I always had a few questions about it,” McCarthy said, after a reporter asked if he had any idea about the allegations against Santos before they became public.
The reporter also asked how a Santos staffer was caught impersonating McCarthy’s chief of staff to make fundraising calls during Santos House’s 2020 and 2022 campaigns.
“You know, I didn’t know about that. It happened – I know they fixed it, but I wasn’t made aware of it until a later date,” he said, noting that he spoke to Santos about it.
After winning his election in November and following explosive media reports, Santos admitted he lied about elements of his professional experience, heritage and upbringing. Recent reports from the New York Times and New York Post indicated that GOP leaders and some top Republican aides knew about the fabrications before his election.
McCarthy, who has endorsed Santos and backed his campaign, has played down Santos’ fabrications and declined calls to try to oust him from the House, as the speaker sails in his direction by an extremely narrow majority.
Santos voted for McCarthy in all 15 speaker ballots. If he were to be expelled, McCarthy has no guarantee that the seat would be filled by an ally (or even a Republican).
New York Democratic Reps. Dan Goldman and Ritchie Torres on Sunday demanded that House GOP leaders disclose what they know about the extent of Santos’ dishonesty and cooperate with current and future investigations into Santos.
“It’s one thing for a candidate like Mr. Santos to trick voters into supporting him based on a web of lies,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter to McCarthy; Rep. Elise Stefanik (RN.Y.), President of the House Republican Conference; and Dan Conston, who heads the Congressional Leadership Fund PAC. “But it’s quite another thing if the highest levels of Republican leadership knew about Mr. Santos’ lies during the campaign and chose to be complicit.”
The Huffington Gt