Rep.-elect George Santos faces increasing calls to resign after he admitted fabricating parts of his resume, including information about his education and employment history.
in a bombing research Published on December 19, The New York Times said it could not substantiate many of Santos’ alleged qualifications, such as that he had worked for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup and graduated from Baruch College.
Santos, who made history in LGBTQ politics when he won the November election in New York’s 3rd Congressional District, which covers parts of Long Island and Queens, admitted to what he described as “hype.”[ing]” and “beautifying” your scores in at least three Interviews on Monday.
“Many people exaggerate on their resumes or twist them a bit,” he said in an interview with WABC radio. “I’m not saying I’m not guilty of that.”
In an interview with the new york post officehe said he did not graduate from Baruch College or any institution of higher learning.
“I’m embarrassed and I’m sorry I embellished my resume,” he said, according to the newspaper. “I recognize that. … We do stupid things in life.”
and apologized in a interview with City and State of New York, saying: “Did I embellish my resume? Yes, I do. And I’m sorry, and it shouldn’t be done.”
in a old version of your campaign websiteSantos said he “began working at Citigroup as an associate” after graduating from Baruch College and, later in his career, “was offered an exciting opportunity with Goldman Sachs” that “was not as fulfilling as he had anticipated.”
However, in Monday’s interview with the New York Post, he described his claims that he had worked for the two companies as “a poor choice of words” and said he did business with them when he was vice president of a company called LinkBridge.
Santos denied reports by The New York Times that he has unresolved criminal charges from 2008 for check fraud in Brazil.
Santos told the New York Post: “I am not a criminal here, neither here nor in Brazil nor in any jurisdiction in the world. Absolutely not. That didn’t happen.”
Santos is also facing scrutiny for his past claims that he has Jewish heritage. The campaign website’s biography of him previously said that his mother’s parents “fled Jewish persecution in the Ukraine, settled in Belgium and again fled persecution during World War II.” Starting Tuesday, the biography had been removed.
saints said in previous interviews that his family converted to Catholicism when they moved to Brazil and that he is not Jewish. But The fronta New York City-based Jewish publication, shared Tuesday a copy of a position paper in which Santos called himself a “proud American Jew.”
However, in his interview with the New York Post, Santos said he is “clearly Catholic” and, according to the newspaper, “claimed that his grandmother told stories about being Jewish and then converting to Catholicism.”
“I never claimed to be Jewish,” Santos said. “I am Catholic. Since I found out that my maternal family had a Jewish background, I said that I was ‘Jewish.'”
This week’s interviews are among Santos’ first responses to the Times investigation, and his comments have drawn widespread criticism, some of it from other Republican officials.
Nassau Republican Party Chairman Joseph Cairo said in a statement Tuesday that he is “deeply disappointed” in Santos and that he “expected more than a general apology.”
“The damage that his lies have done to many people, especially those affected by the Holocaust, is profound,” Cairo said. “He must do the will of the public in Washington. … George Santos will have to continually show that he has learned his lesson.”
Matt Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, a political group that supports Jewish Republicans, said in a statement Tuesday that Santos “misled us and misrepresented his heritage.”
“In public comments and to us personally, he previously claimed to be Jewish,” Brooks said. “He has started his term in Congress on a very wrong note. He will not be welcome at any future RJC events.”
There is at least one Republican defending Santos: Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. in a Twitter thread Posted Tuesday afternoon, Greene He said the “real reason” Santos is being attacked by “the left” is that he is the “first openly gay Republican ever elected and they hate him for it.”
“I’m glad George is being honest with his district now and I look forward to seeing how George legislates and votes,” Greene wrote.
Representatives Ted Lieu and Eric Swalwell, both Democrats from California, said Santos should not be allowed to serve in Congress.
Santos’ competitor in the November election, Democrat Robert Zimmerman, also urged him to resign and run again against him in a special election.
“Face voters with your real past and answer questions about your criminal record,” Zimmerman said. On twitter. “Let the voters decide.”
Rep. Ritchie Torres, DN.Y., has asked the House Ethics Committee to investigate Santos for part of the Times report on his finances. The report found Santos was served with an eviction order in 2017 for failing to pay rent on his apartment in the New York City borough of Queens, but financial disclosure forms also show he lent his campaign more than $ 700,000 during the midterm elections. NBC News was able to confirm that Santos has faced at least two evictions since 2014.
In her interview with the New York Post, Santos said that at the time of the 2017 eviction lawsuit, her family was “in debt” due to her mother’s battle with cancer.
“We had trouble paying rent at the time,” he said. “It is the vulnerability of being human. I’m not ashamed of it.”
He said his mother, Fatima Devolder, died of cancer in December 2016 after living in the apartment with him.
NBC News tried to reach George Santos overnight but received no response.
Santos also faces scrutiny for his claim that his mother was a survivor of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. An earlier version of her campaign website said she was a financial executive working in the South Tower of the World Trade Center during the time of the attacks.
“She survived the horrific events of that day, but unfortunately passed away a few years later,” her website previously stated. She also reiterated the claim of 9/11 survivors in a June 2021 statement. interview with WABC radio.
Public employment records show only one employer for Santos’ mother: Imports by Rose, a Queens-based company that closed in 1994. The New York Times reported that Santos’ mother was a domestic worker, not a financial executive.
When asked about Santos’ claims regarding his mother, Santos’ attorney Joseph Murray referred NBC News to Kevin Connors, who Murray said would handle Santos’ media inquiries. Connors did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Questions about Santos’s sexuality also arose after The Daily Beast reported on Thursday that he did not publicly disclose that he had been married to a woman. According to public records, Santos was married to a woman from 2012 to 2019, shortly before he first ran for Congress as a deputy. out gay candidate. Santos also hinted in a October interview with USA Today that he had been “openly gay” for at least a decade.
Santos confirmed his previous marriage to the New York Post on Monday, saying the issue is “personal” and that he is now happily married to a gay man.
“I’m very gay,” he told the Post. “I am fine with my sexuality. People change. I’m one of those people who change.”
Despite widespread criticism, Santos maintained in a WABC radio interview on Monday that he did not “let down” voters.
“I am not a criminal who ripped off the whole country and made up this fictional character and ran for Congress,” he said.