Effort To Expel George Santos From House Fails

A few moderate New York House Republicans joined a host of Democrats in attempting to remove Rep. George Santos (R-NY) from the lower chamber.

While Santos is accused of some ethically questionable statements and acts, he did not lead a Capitol takeover by Hamas supporters, as one of his Democratic colleagues recently did — when an expulsion results from that despicable act, then it may be time to talk.

A two-thirds majority was needed for expulsion, but the final tally did not come close to this margin. Only 179 representatives voted for Santos’ removal, while 182 Republicans and 31 Democrats voted to allow him to keep his seat.

This marked the second effort in the House to send Santos packing.

In May, the House voted to move a Democratic expulsion resolution to the Ethics Committee. Along with leftist opposition came cooperation by a group of New York Republicans.

Santos faces 23 federal accusations of wrongdoing, ranging from deceiving donors and collecting fake unemployment benefits to filing misleading financial statements in the House.

Santos is widely accused of fabricating much of his life story to appeal to New York voters. Detractors also believe he lied to Congress to protect himself from past deeds and statements.

Most Republicans fell in line behind new House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA), who declared that Santos should have his day in court and that it is “a problem” if lawmakers are expelled over simply being charged or accused of wrongdoing.

There were also Democrats reluctant to act before the Ethics Committee had its say. The group issued a memo the day before the House vote saying it had interviewed some 40 witnesses and issued 37 subpoenas.

It said a further announcement on the direction of the investigation is forthcoming on Nov. 17.

For one, Santos was relieved to not be expelled from the House. “I feel like due process is still alive. I feel like there are enough colleagues on both sides of the aisle here who understand that.”

Historically, the House has been hesitant to utilize the power of expulsion. There were three such instances during the Civil War, and twice representatives were shown the door after being convicted of public corruption.

It would set a new precedent to expel Santos before the federal court case is concluded.