House lawmakers could decide whether to expel George Santos. He says Democrats want to ‘play judge and jury’
Democratic US Rep Robert Garcia introduced a resolution on 16 May to expel George Santos from the House of Representatives after the scandal-plagued congressman refused to resign from office following a range of criminal fraud charges against him.
The “privileged” motion from Mr Garcia gives the Republican-controlled House of Representatives until Thursday to consider it for a vote. It is not clear when that will take place.
That vote is likely to fail in the GOP-dominated House, as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy cannot afford to lose any Republican votes in a fractured Congress.
The 34-year-old Long Island Republican and prolific fabulist, who was elected to office in November, has refused to step down following a wave of reporting that documents his false and inflated claims about his income, career and life story.
When asked by CBS News to respond to the resolution’s introduction on Tuesday, Mr Santos said “Democrats are really good at trying to play judge and jury” and “trying to hold people guilty before they’ve even been given a fair shot at a trial.”
“I’m confident that justice is blind and that it’s not biased like Robert Garcia is,” he added.
Last week, federal prosecutors charged Mr Santos with 13 counts of wire fraud, money laundering, stealing public funds and lying on federal disclosure forms. He has pleaded not guilty.
“George Santos is a fraud and a liar, and he needs to be expelled by the House,” Mr Garcia said in a statement announcing his resolution.
“News that federal prosecutors are filing 13 criminal charges against George Santos should have been the final straw for Kevin McCarthy, but he refuses to act,” he added. “Republicans now have a chance to demonstrate to Americans that an admitted criminal should not serve in the House of Representatives.”
Mr Garcia’s one-page resolution reads: “Resolved, That, pursuant to Article I, Section 5, Clause 2 of the Constitution of the United States, Representative George Santos, be, and he hereby is, expelled 4 from the House of Representatives.”
A vote to table Mr Garcia’s motion would require a majority vote, and removing Mr Santos would need at least a two-thirds majority vote to succeed.