Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) shot back at Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) after Santos sent him a thank-you note on Friday following his vote against expelling the New York Republican.
Raskin sent back Santos’ letter with annotations, corrections and an added note of criticism.
“P.S. It’s not shameful to resign,” Raskin wrote.
The Republican-led effort to expel Santos was based on a bevy of criminal charges, including fraud and money laundering, as well as a House ethics investigation. The vote failed 213-179-19, with 31 Democrats voting against expulsion while 24 Republicans sided with most Democrats in favor.
Raskin said he wouldn’t support an expulsion vote in order to avoid setting the precedent of expelling lawmakers before they are tried in court.
Santos this week sent a letter to the lawmakers who voted against expelling him, expressing his “gratitude to you for standing up for the principals of due process and the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.”
“I want to sincerely emphasize that I know that your vote was not done for me, but for the sanctity of this institution and the possibility of setting a very dangerous precedent. For that, I thank you,” he added.
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Raskin’s annotations include a correction to “principles,” which is misspelled in the letter, as well as other grammar mistakes.
He also added a personal note for the embattled congressman.
“I appreciate your note and only wish someone had proofread it first,” he wrote. “Meantime, you should apologize to the people of New York for all of your lies and deceit. I know you must have thought you could get away with it all in the party of Trump, but the truth is resilient.”
Santos faces a total of 23 federal charges. His trial is slated to begin in September 2024.
He pleaded not guilty last week to a set of 10 new criminal charges in a superseding indictment alleging he inflated his campaign finance reports and charged his donors’ credit cards without authorization.
In May, he was charged on 13 counts of misleading donors, fraudulently receiving unemployment benefits and lying on House financial disclosures.
Santos is also being investigated by the House Ethics Committee, which said earlier this week it would reveal its “next course of action” by Nov. 17.
Santos admitted earlier this year to embellishing parts of his background while campaigning, but he has reiterated he will not resign, despite his legal troubles.
He said Friday that he will run for reelection in 2024 even if a future expulsion effort succeeds.
“Nobody elected me because I played volleyball or not,” Santos said in a CNN interview clip released Friday, referring to previous lies about his background. “Nobody elected me because I graduated college or not. People elected me because I said I’d come here to fight the swamp, I’d come here to lower inflation, create more jobs, make life more affordable, and the commitment to America. That’s why people voted for anybody.”