- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 22, 2022

A New York Republican elected to his first term in the House last month is facing questions that he falsified key parts of his biography during the midterm election cycle.

Rep.-elect George Santos, 34, described himself in his campaign resume as growing up in a blue-collar immigrant family in Queens who, after earning his high school GED, moved up in the financial industry and made a killing on Wall Street following “landmark deals.”

However, although Mr. Santos claimed he earned a finance degree from Baruch College, The New York Times failed to find records that he ever was a student.

Additionally, financial firms, including Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, where Mr. Santos claimed he once worked, told the newspaper they had no records of him ever being an employee.

Mr. Santos also claimed on his campaign website that he attained a second degree from New York University, but a spokesman for NYU could not locate a record showing the New York Republican ever being a student.

The questions about his background did not stop there. Other issues about Mr. Santos’ life were omitted, including an unresolved criminal fraud investigation in Brazil, where his family previously resided.

According to The Times, records in Brazil show Mr. Santos was criminally investigated in 2008 over allegations that he used stolen checks to purchase items at an apparel shop in the city of Niteroi. Prosecutors told the newspaper the case was dormant because Mr. Santos never appeared in court.

Mr. Santos made himself out to be a well-to-do real estate investor whose family owned numerous properties, but court records reportedly showed he was subject to three eviction proceedings in Queens from 2014 to 2017 because of unpaid rent.

Mr. Santos was elected to the state’s 3rd Congressional District by defeating Democrat Robert Zimmerman. The district, which includes parts of Queens and Long Island, went for President Biden by 8 points in the 2020 election.

Following the news about Mr. Santos’ questionable background, Democrats became furious that more was not done during the campaign to research his life story.

Mr. Santos did not respond to an inquiry by The Washington Times, but his attorney said he was being targeted by people “threatened” by his politics.

“I have questions: The opposing campaign didn’t have a budget for oppo? The media apparatus in NY just believed whatever he said? The NRCC didn’t run a search?!?? The man was literally evicted twice & nobody knew? What the hell was going on?” tweeted Symone Sanders, outgoing spokeswoman for Vice President Kamala Harris.

“One more reason [Gov.] Kathy Hochul should fire [New York Democratic Party Chairman] Jay Jacobs,” tweeted Monica Klein, a progressive political strategist and former staffer for Mayor Bill de Blasio and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. “A real State Dem Party would invest in basic oppo research. This should’ve come out 3 months ago.”

Mr. Zimmerman called for the House Ethics Committee, the Federal Elections Commission and federal prosecutors to investigate Mr. Santos.

“Santos’ failure to answer any of the questions about these allegations demonstrates why he is unfit for public office and should resign,” Mr. Zimmerman said on a social media post.

• This article was based in part on wire service reports.

• Kerry Picket can be reached at kpicket@washingtontimes.com.

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