“This is not just a simple liar,” Rep. Daniel Goldman (D-N.Y.) told reporters on the steps of the Capitol. “This is a conman who does not belong in Congress, and he needs to go.”
Sponsored by Rep. Robert Garcia (D-Calif.), the proposal has little chance of getting a vote in a chamber controlled by GOP leaders who are defending Santos’s right to keep his seat. But Democrats are hoping the measure will draw new attention to the embattled lawmaker, link the broader GOP to Santos’s many scandals, and force Republican leaders to stand by their opposition to his removal even as the questions surrounding his background and campaign finances pile up.
“His continued pattern of fraud and deception is especially worrisome to our own LGBTQ+ community, and it’s time we act and immediately expel him from Congress,” Garcia said.
The single-page resolution leans on the constitutional clause empowering each chamber to “punish its Members for disorderly Behavior, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member.”
The two-thirds stipulation is a high bar, requiring 290 lawmakers to adopt the measure if it were to reach the floor. That means Democrats would need almost 80 Republicans to jump on board — an unlikely scenario as long as GOP leaders continue to back Santos.
Santos won his lower house seat in the Nov. 8 midterm elections and became the first openly gay Republican to win a seat in Congress without the advantage of incumbency.