With revelations about his past piling up, George Santos has arrived in Washington for the start of the new Congress.
The congressman-elect is embroiled in a growing scandal, amid revelations he lied about his work experience, education and even his faith.
Swarmed by members of the press on Tuesday, the New York Republican was silent, repeatedly dodging questions about his background.
Rep-elect George Santos does not respond to various shouted questions while en route to the Capitol for the start of the 118th Congress.— Kevin Frey (@KevinFreyTV) January 3, 2023
- Do you regret anything you've done, said?
- Any remorse, any apology?
- Why should any lawmaker trust anything you say? pic.twitter.com/9RgAK6Z4wm
Investigators at the local, state and federal level — and now in Brazil — are looking into Santos. The New York Times reported that law enforcement authorities in Brazil intend to revive fraud charges against Santos, stemming from an incident 15 years ago involving a stolen checkbook.
Incoming New York Republicans who spoke with Spectrum News NY1 were critical of Santos, urging him to cooperate with investigators.
“George Santos has disappointed me. The breadth of his dishonesty is very troubling,” Rep.-elect Marc Molinaro said.
“This is an embarrassment. It’s a distraction. And it's something that he needs to face with a soberness and a seriousness,” Rep.-elect Mike Lawler added.
Notably quiet so far, however, are House Republican leaders, including upstate New York Congresswoman and Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, who endorsed Santos.
Stefanik’s team has not responded to multiple requests for comment.
Incoming Democratic Congressman Dan Goldman of Brooklyn and Manhattan, who is a former federal prosecutor, argued their silence is telling.
“The fact that they have not condemned it demonstrates that George Santos is right at the core of this Republican Party,” Goldman said.
The one thing Santos did tell reporters Tuesday is that he intended to back California Rep. Kevin McCarthy for speaker. And as Tuesday’s votes demonstrated, McCarthy could use every supporter he can find.