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Embattled Newly Elected Rep. George Santos (R-NY) Is Sought After By Reporters On Capitol Hill

Source: Win McNamee / Getty

Embattled congressman George Santos has broken his silence to insist he will not resign over growing calls to step down over his growing history of lying about his past.

On Wednesday afternoon (Jan. 11), as the freshman Republican congressman was leaving his office, he was asked about the calls to resign from local officials of his party by ABC reporter Rachel Scott. “Will you step down?” she asked. Santos swiftly answered, “I will not.” As he stepped onto the elevator, he refused to answer further questions from other reporters.

Santos would later take a more defiant tone on social media. “I was elected to serve the people of #NY03, not the party & politicians, I remain committed to doing that and regret to hear that local officials refuse to work with my office to deliver results to keep our community safe and lower the cost of living. I will NOT resign!” he wrote.

Earlier on, leaders from the Nassau County Republican Party had held a press conference to publicly call on Santos to resign. “Today, on behalf of the Nassau County Republican Committee, I’m calling for his immediate resignation,” committee chairman Joseph G. Cairo said to the press. Saying he “deceived voters.” Cairo continued: “His lies were not mere fibs. He disgraced the House of Representatives. … He’s not welcome here at Republican headquarters.”

Cairo was joined by more than 20 prominent Republicans at the conference and remotely from Washington D.C., including four of Santos’ fellow members of the House – New York Representative Anthony D’Esposito along with Reps. Nick LaLota, Nick Langworthy and Brandon Williams, as well as South Carolina Rep. Nancy Mace.

It was the strongest condemnation of the controversial politician from his own party to date, marking a sharp contrast to their full support of him during his campaigns in 2020 and 2022. Bruce Blakeman, Nassau County GOP executive, stated that Santos’ lies about being Jewish were particularly offensive. “He is a stain on the House of Representatives. He is a stain on the 3rd Congressional District,” he said.

The senior Republicans in the House – Speaker Kevin McCarthy, Majority Leader Steve Scalise and Majority Whip Tom Emmer – have remained mum about the latest calls for Santos to resign. McCarthy said on Wednesday “the voters have a voice in the decisions, not where people pick and choose based upon what somebody’s press has.” The GOP currently has a slender majority in the House, thanks to Santos’ flipping of the district in the midterms.