Santos denounces GOP, runs as Independent in new House bid

Santos denounces GOP, runs as Independent in new House bid
Former U.S. Rep. George Santos. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

While the Republican Party has denounced former representative and party member George Santos, the defrocked 3rd District representative has now left the party himself as he vies for another congressional seat as an Independent.

“After today’s embarrassing showing in the House I have reflected and decided that I can no longer be part of the Republican Party,” Santos posted on X, referencing the attempt by the lower congressional body to pass a government funding bill. “The Republican Party continues to lie and swindle its voter base. I in good conscience cannot affiliate myself with a party that stands for nothing and falls for everything.”

Instead, Santos will be running as an Independent as he attempts to rejoin the House in the wake of his expulsion.

“I will take my Ultra MAGA/Trump supporting values to the ballot in November as an Independent,” Santos posted on X.

Just two weeks earlier Santos announced his bid for representative to New York’s 1st Congressional District, petitioning as a Republican to challenge Rep. Nick LaLota. He said he will now be suspending that petition to file as an Independent.

New York’s 1st Congressional District encompasses Long Island’s most eastern part. Under recently approved district maps, the district no longer covers Lloyd Harbor and Huntington Bay, but adds the Moriches.

Also campaigning for the 1st District seat are Republican Rep. LaLota and Democrat John Avlon, who Santos called out in his tweet announcing his Independent affiliation.

“@nicklalota and @JohnAvlon ill see you boys in November [sic],” Santos posted on X, along with a kissy face emoji.

Santos took office in January 2023, representing the 3rd Congressional District encompassing parts of Nassau and Queens.

On Dec. 1 Santos became just the sixth member of the House to be expelled through a 311-114 vote, with 105 Republicans voting in favor of his removal.

Santos was tossed out of the House after its bipartisan Ethics Committee released a long-awaited investigative report finding “substantial evidence” that Santos violated federal law.

Investigators said they found Santos used campaign funds for personal purposes, defrauded donors and filed false or incomplete campaign and financial disclosures.

Santos pleaded not guilty in May to a 13-count indictment from federal prosecutors encompassing 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 Congress.

He was later slapped with 10 additional counts, including one count of conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States, two counts of wire fraud, two counts of lying to the Federal Election Commission, two counts of falsifying records, two counts of aggravated identify theft and one count of device fraud.

He is scheduled to face trial in federal court for the Eastern District of New York in September. If convicted of the top charges, Santos could face up to 20 years in prison.

While his trial begins in September, Santos would be near the culmination of his congressional campaign.

The district’s primary will be held June 25 before Election Day on Nov. 5.

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