If George Santos was a decent person, he would resign. Of course, a decent person would not habitually lie about seemingly every aspect of their life in a desperate attempt to win political office. We are used to politicians stretching the truth, embellishing a legislative accomplishment, but this goes so far beyond the pale. I thought I could no longer be shocked at what a politician would do or say, and be apparently allowed to get away with, in this post-truth Trump era but here I am shocked. With Santos apparently having no intention of resigning it leaves voters in New York wondering what their next options are.
New York Election law does not allow for a recall vote. The New York State Legislature can’t refuse to seat Santos as is being considered for Lester Chang in Brooklyn who may have lied about his residency. This lies solely with the new House of representatives in January. While in theory the House GOP could also refuse to seat him, that is unlikely as Kevin McCarthy needs his vote to become speaker and the GOP has a small 9 vote margin. Though some GOP congressional representatives have expressed concerns, they will likely sweep this under the rug.
There remains the possibility that Santos has engaged in illegal activity. There are now both state and federal investigations. What is curious is with all the fabrication on his resume how he could loan his campaign 700k while seemingly having no ability to earn that type of money. Certainly, if there are cries indictment and convictions could shorten his tenure. However, as we saw with Chris Collins in the Buffalo area an indicted representative can hang on until conviction and that could be much longer than 2 years.
As unsatisfying as it may be, the Santos saga may not be able to be resolved until Election Day of 2024. There is plenty of blame that the media ignored this until after the campaign. Likewise, his opponent and DCCC could have made more forceful arguments. However, the voters themselves deserve some responsibility as well. They should think about which side is not only committing the fraud but willing to live with it for political benefit when the next election finally comes.
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