George Santos' Uncovered Lies Don't Appear to Bother Republicans At All

The first-time member of Congress is all set to be sworn in, and the mountain of lies keeps growing.
Newly elected Republican representative from New York, George Santos looks on as the House of Representatives convenes for the 118th Congress at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., Jan. 3, 2023.
Newly elected Republican representative from New York, George Santos looks on as the House of Representatives convenes for the 118th Congress at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., Jan. 3, 2023.
Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

I can’t decide which is worse: The Republican politician who lied, his Republican colleagues who have remained silent about the lies, or the voters who didn’t mind being duped by a liar.

The George Santos saga has been everywhere since The New York Times uncovered a mountain of lies he peddled during his campaign, lies he admitted to — excuse me, “embellished”— and that continued to pile up after he was elected.

In the private sector, you typically pay the price for lying on your resume. But this is Congress, and now a lying Long Island Republican is a member. The idea of an admitted liar swearing fidelity to the Constitution is as grotesque as it is sickening.

Santos remains shameless. Sadly, so have his Republican colleagues, unless the word “former” or “outgoing” precedes their name — no risk there in condemning one of your own. Or we get a muted call for the House Ethics Committee to investigate. But not a single incoming Republican member of the 118th Congress has spoken out.

How ironic that Republicans would cast out Liz Cheney, a lifelong conservative, for seeking truths about a different liar, but about Santos, the party of Honest Abe has remained silent.

But they know. They know how disgraceful this is, how damaging it is to a party whose only political achievement has been to set the ethics bar even lower.

Or maybe they don’t care. After all, if Republicans didn’t denounce, en masse, a deadly attempt to overthrow our government (let alone the man who ignited it), the piggish misogyny of a presidential candidate and international extortionist schemer, or a credibly accused pedophile, and if they refused to change federal gun laws after 20 first-graders were massacred, they certainly wouldn’t denounce a member of their tribe for being a pathological lying deadbeat.

Indeed, multiple insiders close to the House GOP leadership knew Santos was lying but said nothing.

“What can you do?” one senior Republican aide told The New York Post. “He was the only Republican candidate.”

He’s also part of a razor-thin majority in the House. Invertebrate Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) first praised Santos’s victory but then went silent. Well, sure. Santos promised to back McCarthy for House speaker (can you believe the promises of a proven liar?) and might be a key vote for someone still scrambling for support to win the speakership.

It probably explains the wind mockery of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). The MAGA crank now supporting McCarthy’s speakership bid (apparently in exchange for committee assignments) defended Santos. She accused former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) of having “zero grace” for tearing into Santos during an interview on Fox News “while George is admitting and apologizing for lying about his resume.”

Wait: You’re more upset about Gabbard calling Santos out for lying than you are about Santos lying? Then explain your Daily Caller op-ed a week earlier when you wrote, “lying to the base is a red line for me.”

Ya suppose Greene would’ve been shrieking a different line had Santos been a Democrat?

Too bad Politico can’t go back to New York’s 3rd Congressional District now and talk to Santos supporters before his interview with Gabbard.

Daniel Zimmerman, a 70-year-old registered Democrat and no relation to Santos’s Democratic opponent, Robert Zimmerman, told Politico at the time that he’d vote for Santos again despite The Times’ blockbuster account. “I’m a Republican because Democrats, they’re destroying our country,” he said.

“I don’t trust the Democrats on anything they say,” said another Santos supporter, who wouldn’t give her name for privacy reasons.

I wonder what voters like that are saying now?

Other residents in the district have protested, and Santos has been taking a beating on his Facebook page, but that’s about all voters can do. They can’t recall him. The Constitution contains no such mechanism for recalling federal lawmakers. Santos can only resign or be expelled, which requires a vote of two-thirds of House members.

Republicans won’t do it. If they did, his district would hold a special election, which a Democrat would almost surely win, shrinking the GOP’s tiny House majority.

Instead, expect this:

Hey, Republicans! How will you address the George Santos scandal?

Answer: Hunter Biden had a laptop.

Legal developments might compel Republicans to vote for expulsion. Santos is facing several potential investigations into his questionable past, which could result in jail time. Certainly a better use of our tax dollars instead of paying his Congressional salary.

Meanwhile, Santos has yet to admit he lied. Instead, he’s done a linguistic tap dance, calling his lies “embellishments,” a “poor choice of words,” or the contorted “Jew-ish,” to explain his campaign claim about being a “proud American Jew.” (His district is more than 20 percent Jewish.)

“A lot of people overstate on their resumes or twist a little bit,” Santos told WABC radio.

I see. Everyone else is doing it. That’s the excuse we make to justify doing something we know is wrong. I’ve never understood why “everyone else is doing it” is such an attractive idea to a nation that prides itself on its individuality as ours does or why it’s such an attractive idea to any Republican whose party extolls the virtues of personal responsibility and accountability.

Conservative outlets certainly aren’t going there. Those that once embraced Santos are now ignoring him. It’s easier to find the Gabbard interview on Google than on the Fox News website. I couldn’t find a single criticism of Santos on any major conservative outlet. Whadda surprise!

These are the guys who say they want their country back. Funny, in his first inaugural address, President Dwight Eisenhower warned: “A people that values its privileges above its principles soon lose both.”

How soon until voters make that happen to these Republicans?

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