WASHINGTON — House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told reporters on Tuesday that Rep. George Santos is facing an ethics probe amid questions about his resume, family history and campaign finances, according to multiple reports.
On Tuesday, McCarthy told reporters that the House Ethics Committee “is moving through, and if Ethics finds something, we’ll take action,” WABC-TV reported.
“Right now, we’re not allowing him to be on committees from the standpoint of the questions that have arisen,” he said, according to CNN.
The comment marked the first public confirmation of the investigation.
Santos, R-N.Y., stepped down from his assignments on the House Small Business and the Science, Space and Technology committees last week, citing “the ongoing attention surrounding both my personal and campaign financial investigations.” He said he asked McCarthy that he be “temporarily recused … until I am cleared.”
On Tuesday, McCarthy said that he and Santos had a conversation before he stepped down at which they decided that such a move was “best at this moment.”
“I think that’s the right decision,” the California Republican said. “Answer the questions before we move forward.”
Santos told CNN that he is “not concerned” about the House probe or about constituents who have called for his resignation in recent weeks. A Newsday/Siena College poll last week found that 78% of voters in Santos’ district believe he should resign, including 89% of Democrats, 72% of independents and 71% of Republicans.
The freshman lawmaker in December admitted to fabricating parts of the biography he shared on the campaign trail, telling the New York Post, “My sins here are embellishing my resume. I’m sorry.”
Santos said he lied about working for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, about having graduated from college and about property he had claimed to own. However, he dismissed concerns stemming from the fabrications, saying that he “campaigned talking about the people’s concerns, not my resume,” according to the Post.
Authorities are also investigating whether Santos’ campaign followed the law in its reporting to the Federal Election Commission, according to The Associated Press.
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