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George Santos Complains That He’s Being Bullied Out of Congress, Announces Own Expulsion Motion

Rep. George Santos
Christopher Wiggins for The Advocate

During an early morning press conference, Santos claimed that he was the victim of bullying. He also said he's going to try to expell a Democratic lawmaker.

Cwnewser

In a press conference on a cold Washington, D.C. morning outside of the U.S. Capitol, Rep. George Santos, the New York fabulist, vehemently defended himself against allegations leading to an upcoming House expulsion vote, accusing his fellow lawmakers of “bullying” him.

With the Friday vote looming, Santos remained adamant in his refusal to resign, denouncing the recent damning House Ethics Committee’s report as incomplete and exaggerated.

Santos, facing 23 federal charges including fraud, money laundering, and identity theft, warned of the implications of the vote.

“If the House wants to start a different precedent and expel me, that is going to be the undoing of a lot of members of this body,” he said. He expressed his view of the situation as a performance, saying, “The reality of it is it’s all theater. It’s theater for the cameras, it’s theater for the microphones, it’s theater for the American people at the expense of the American people because no real work’s getting done.”

Related: Watch George Santos Be Defiant and Dramatic as He Faces Another House Expulsion Vote

Dozens of reporters and photographers attended Santos’ press conference, and the congressman took several questions.

Directly addressing the Ethics Committee’s report, which detailed numerous allegations against him, Santos critiqued its contents and methodology.

Watch George Santos Claim He Is Being Bullied Out of Congress

“By admission of the chairman himself, he said that the process was not full throttle and not complete.” He emphasized his own cooperation with the investigation, claiming, “I cooperated. I provided them every single document.”

Santos’s gave a speech on the House floor on Tuesday in which he engaged in a mix of defiance and mockery. He chided other members of Congress for their legal issues, suggesting a double standard in the treatment he was receiving.

“We have members with severe allegations against them having the gall and the courage to call the speaker a joke,” he said Tuesday.

On the topic of his expulsion, Santos stood firm against the idea of stepping down, “Because if I leave, they win.”

He further defended his decision not to engage with the details of the Ethics Committee’s report now, before the vote, asserting he would address it “line by line when the time is proper.”

Related: Mike Johnson Says He Spoke With George Santos About Ethics Scandal Over Thanksgiving

Santos also took a moment to criticize the handling of the vote, noting the timing.

As the vote approaches, House Speaker Mike Johnson expressed “real reservations” about the expulsion motion but indicated that lawmakers would be free to vote as they see fit. The resolution, initiated by Ethics Committee chairman Rep. Michael Guest and advanced under privilege by Rep. Anthony D’Esposito, is set to be considered imminently. Rep. Robert Garcia, a Democrat from California, also filed a privileged motion to expel Santos earlier this week.

Amidst the gravity of the impending vote and the severity of the allegations against him, Santos took a moment to reflect on a personal milestone, albeit with a touch of irony given his current circumstances.

“Today is my second-year wedding anniversary, and I’m going to enjoy it and try to forget the fact that it’s been one year from hell,” he remarked. He reiterated that he would not seek reelection because of the stress the process would put on his family.

Santos also addressed the media attention and public scrutiny he has faced.

“You guys are so obsessed with me, you even report on my Gucci shoes,” he said, focusing intensely on his personal style and expenditures. Part of the ethics investigation found that he allegedly used campaign funds for luxury items like clothing.

Asked about the shoes he was wearing, Santos said they were six years old and urged reporters to look them up.

Amid these reflections, Santos repeated his determination to stay in Congress, emphasizing his elected mandate. He stressed the importance of upholding the will of the voters who elected him, suggesting that removing him based solely on allegations would set a dangerous precedent.

“This will haunt them in the future where mere allegations are sufficient to have members removed from office when duly elected by their people in their respective states and districts,” he cautioned.

In a bold and contentious move, Santos announced his intention to file an expulsion resolution against fellow New York Rep. Jamal Bowman, a Democrat.

Related: Marjorie Taylor Greene Is Mad That Fellow Republicans Might Expel Her Friend George Santos

Bowman recently found himself in legal trouble, having pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge for falsely pulling a fire alarm in a Capitol Hill office building. This incident occurred in haste before a crucial vote to fund the government. As part of his plea agreement, Bowman must pay a $1,000 fine and serve three months of probation, after which the charge is expected to be dismissed from his record. The incident, as described by Bowman, was a "lapse in judgment." He explained that in his rush to vote, he encountered a door that usually opened during votes but was locked on this occasion, leading him to activate the fire alarm mistakenly. This action inadvertently caused the evacuation of the office building.

Santos, seizing upon this incident, argued for consistency in addressing the conduct of members of Congress, regardless of party affiliation.

“We have a member of Congress that earlier this year took a plea deal to obstructing a congressional hearing,” he said. “That’s not the plea deal he took, right? I’m kidding. He took a plea deal for pulling a fire alarm.”

It’s unclear how Santos’s motion will be handled with his own expulsion looming.

The House is expected to vote on Friday as to whether Santos becomes the sixth person ever expelled from the House of Representatives. It will take a two-thirds majority vote to oust Santos.

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Christopher Wiggins

Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).
Christopher Wiggins is a senior national reporter for The Advocate. He has a rich career in storytelling and highlighting underrepresented voices. Growing up in a bilingual household in Germany, his German mother and U.S. Army father exposed him to diverse cultures early on, influencing his appreciation for varied perspectives and communication. His work in Washington, D.C., primarily covers the nexus of public policy, politics, law, and LGBTQ+ issues. Wiggins' reporting focuses on revealing lesser-known stories within the LGBTQ+ community. Key moments in his career include traveling with Vice President Kamala Harris and interviewing her in the West Wing about LGBTQ+ support. In addition to his national and political reporting, Wiggins represents The Advocate in the White House Press Pool and is a member of several professional journalistic organizations, including the White House Correspondents’ Association, Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists, and Society of Professional Journalists. His involvement in these groups highlights his commitment to ethical journalism and excellence in the field. Follow him on X/Twitter @CWNewser (https://twitter.com/CWNewser) and Threads @CWNewserDC (https://www.threads.net/@cwnewserdc).