FRep. ormer and New York Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin believes Rep. George Santos (R-NY) should resign from office, saying voters in the district Santos represents are “embarrassed” by the freshman lawmaker amid his numerous scandals.
Zeldin made the comments in an interview with the New York Post in which he sounded the alarm about what the precariousness of Santos could mean for Republicans in the House of Representatives.
GEORGE SANTOS REACHES AGREEMENT WITH BRAZILIAN PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE TO ELIMINATE CRIMINAL CHARGES
Lee Zeldin // George Santos
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin // Stefan Jeremiah/AP
The biggest concern for the House GOP, according to Zeldin, are first-term Republican House members who voters may associate with Santos, also a first-term member. For Zeldin, they will likely face tough re-election campaigns in swing districts, and “do not need or want” the distractions of Santos.
“If it was him, he would have resigned,” said the 2015-2023 representative from New York. “The people who voted for him are more upset than the people who didn’t vote for him.”
What are Santos’ distractions that have led to bipartisan support for his resignation?
The New York Republican is charged with seven counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, one count of theft of public funds and two counts of making materially false statements to the House of Representatives, the Justice Department announced last week. As big as the legal problems for Santos are, many people see his alleged lying on the campaign trail as just as problematic from a moral perspective.
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Santos pleaded not guilty to the charges at his first court appearance last week before claiming he was the victim of a “witch hunt”. He was released on $500,000 bond.
Also last week, the 34-year-old reached a deal with Brazilian prosecutors to drop criminal charges obtained when he was 19.