Nassau DA Anne Donnelly investigating lying George Santos
The Republican district attorney for Nassau County announced Wednesday that her office was probing GOP Congressman-elect George Santos after he admitted to The Post earlier this week that he had fabricated much of his past claims about his life.
“The numerous fabrications and inconsistencies associated with Congressman-Elect Santos are nothing short of stunning,” DA Anne Donnelly said in a statement.
“The residents of Nassau County and other parts of the Third District must have an honest and accountable representative in Congress,” added Donnelly, who spent 32 years as a prosecutor before being elected DA last year. “No one is above the law and if a crime was committed in this county, we will prosecute it.”
Santos, 34, acknowledged Monday that he lied about his college education, his employment history, and even his religious background as he successfully campaigned for New York’s 3rd Congressional District House seat.
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 are embellishing my resume. I’m sorry,” Santos said at the time, adding that he had “never worked directly” for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup and didn’t graduate “from any institution of higher learning.”
The first openly gay non-incumbent Republican elected to Congress also admitted to lying about his religious background, when he described himself in campaign material as a “proud American Jew” and claimed both that his mother was Jewish and that his grandparents fled Nazi persecution.
“I am Catholic. Because I learned my maternal family had a Jewish background I said I was ‘Jew-ish,’” Santos said Monday.
Santos’ misrepresentations have sparked outrage from members of both parties, though there is no constitutional mechanism short of resignation to prevent him from taking his seat in Congress Jan. 3.
In response to Donnelly’s announcement, Hudson Valley Rep.-elect Mike Lawler said Santos should “cooperate fully” with any investigation “if he is to regain the trust of his constituents and colleagues.”
“George Santos owes the people of his district the complete and total truth about his personal and professional background, and a sincere apology for his behavior,” Lawler said. “Attempts to blame others or minimize his actions are only making things worse and a complete distraction from the task at hand.”
“House Republicans like me are eager to be sworn in and focus on our Commitment to American and our respective districts,” Long Island GOP Rep.-elect Nick LaLota said in a statement on Tuesday. “Yet, over the last few weeks I have heard from countless Long Islanders how deeply troubled they are by the headlines surrounding George Santos.”
LaLota went on to call for the House Ethics Committee to investigate Santos once he is seated in the lower chamber.
“As a Navy man who campaigned on restoring accountability and integrity to our government, I believe a full investigation by the House Ethics Committee and, if necessary, law enforcement, is required,” he said.
Former Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard also confronted Santos in an interview on Fox News Tuesday night, asking if he “had no shame.”
“Tulsi, I can say the same thing about the Democrats and, and the party,” Santos responded. “Look at Joe Biden. Joe Biden’s been lying to the American people for 40 years. He’s the president of the United States. Democrats over-resoundingly support him. Do they have no shame?”
Gabbard then dismissed the defiant congressman-elect as someone unwilling to admit the scale of “deception” he used on New York voters.
“Congressman-elect Santos, we’ve given you a lot of time,” Gabbard said at the conclusion of the interview. “The time that is owed is to the people of New York’s Third [District]. It’s hard to imagine how they possibly could trust your explanations when you’re not really even willing to admit the depth of your deception to them.”
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