The Nassau County Republican District Attorney announced Wednesday that his office is investigating GOP congressman-elect George Santos after he admitted to the Post earlier this week that he fabricated many of his past claims about his life.
“The many fabrications and inconsistencies associated with Congressman-elect Santos are simply staggering,” DA Anne Donnelly said in a statement.
“The people of Nassau County and other parts of the Third District need to have an honest and accountable representative in Congress,” added Donnelly, who spent 32 years as a district attorney before being elected DA last year. “No one is above the law and if a crime has been committed in this county, we will prosecute it.”
Santos, 34, admitted on Monday that he lied about his college education, work history and even his religious background while successfully campaigning for the 3rd House seat of New York’s Congress.
Santos confessed to The Post that he made up much of his life story after a bombshell New York Times report last week found no record of his employment at prestigious Wall Street firms. and no evidence that he ever graduated from Baruch College, as he claimed in his personal biography.
“My sins here embellish my resume. I’m sorry,” Santos said at the time, adding that he had “never worked directly” for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup and was not a graduate “of any higher education establishment”.
The first openly gay non-incumbent Republican elected to Congress also admitted lying about his religious background, when he described himself in campaign materials as a ‘proud American Jew’ and claimed both his mother was Jewish and that his grandparents had fled Nazi persecution.
“I am Catholic. Because I learned that my maternal family was of Jewish descent, I said I was ‘Jewish,'” Santos said Monday.
Santos’ false statements have drawn outrage from members of both parties, although there is no constitutional mechanism other than resignation to prevent him from taking his congressional seat on January 3.
In response to Donnelly’s announcement, Hudson Valley Representative-elect Mike Lawler said Santos should “fully cooperate” with any investigation “if he is to regain the trust of his constituents and colleagues.”
“George Santos owes the people of his district the full and complete truth about his personal and professional background, and a sincere apology for his behavior,” Lawler said. “Attempts to blame others or minimize one’s actions only make matters worse and a complete distraction from the task at hand.”
“House Republicans like myself are eager to be sworn in and to focus on our commitment to America and our respective districts,” Long Island GOP Representative-elect Nick LaLota said in a statement Tuesday. “Yet over the past few weeks I have heard from countless Long Islanders how deeply disturbed they are by the headlines surrounding George Santos.”
LaLota then called on the House Ethics Committee to investigate Santos once he sits in the lower house.
“As a Navy man who campaigned to restore accountability and integrity to our government, I believe that a thorough investigation by the House Ethics Committee and, if necessary, the forces of the order, is necessary,” he said.
Former Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard also confronted Santos in a PKB News interview on Tuesday night, asking him if he was “not ashamed.”
“Tulsi, I can say the same about the Democrats and the party,” Santos replied. “Look at Joe Biden. Joe Biden has been lying to the American people for 40 years. He’s the President of the United States. Democrats overwhelmingly support him. Aren’t they ashamed?
Gabbard went on to dismiss the defiant congressman-elect as someone unwilling to admit the extent of the “deception” he used on New York voters.
“Congressman-elect Santos, we gave you plenty of time,” Gabbard said at the end of the interview. “The time that is due is to the people of New York’s Third Ward [District]. It’s hard to imagine how they could trust your explanations when you’re not even really willing to admit to them the depth of your deception.