For lack of a better term, the United States House of Representatives is filled with characters. From boomers who can’t understand how the internet works to straight-up conspiracy theorists, there’s no shortage of nutcases representing the people of the United States. Yet despite this large sample size, there’s one who stands head and shoulders above the rest in terms of sheer lunacy: George Santos. New York’s favorite congressman has only been a member of Congress for about four months, but in that short time, he has already established himself as the most controversial, attention-seeking, limelight-hogging, deceiving, egotistical and straight-up annoying congressman of the 21st century.
Now, it probably sounds interesting that I’m this confident to give Santos this nefarious title. After all, he has some pretty stiff competition from people like young grandmother Lauren Boebert and the witch of Georgia, Marjorie Taylor Greene. There’s a concerning myriad of others I could name, but that would take up my whole column. But what separates Santos from other controversial members is that he hasn’t become infamous for his ideology. Rather, he has gained national prominence and intense scrutiny for a seemingly never-ending list of scandals that range from concerning to flat out ridiculous. Even the many scandals of embattled former representative Madison Cawthorn seem average when compared to the firestorm that has defined Santos’ tenure in Congress.
So let’s dive right into the laundry list of scandals that Santos dresses himself in. After being elected to Congress after a meltdown of epic proportions by New York Democrats in 2022, he admitted to making embellishing and false statements about his past and resume, something that most politicians would never admit too. Some of the lowlights included lies about his mother dying on 9/11, attending Baruch College and being a volleyball star there, working for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup and conflicting accounts of his residence. It’s mind-boggling to comprehend why he felt the need to make these misleading statements, especially since many of these lies go back prior to his 2022 campaign. But there’s no more confusing and downright offensive lie than his claims about his religion. Despite claiming on his website that he has Jewish heritage, he later said that he actually meant to say “Jew-ish” and that he’s actually a Catholic. Santos’ defense of lying about his religion is the equivalent of someone saying that they’re “Dan-ish” because they own a great dane. The fact that he thought this was a valid defense is flat out disrespectful to his Jewish constituents, many of whom were disgusted by his comments.
But Santos’ controversies aren’t just limited to his lies to help him get elected. He also happens to be under investigation by the House Ethics Committee for breaking campaign finance laws. FEC records of his finances have found unknown six-figure loans and dozens of campaign expenses that all clock in at $199.99. Santos also faces allegations that many of the names of donors to his unsuccessful 2020 congressional campaign are fake, which raises serious questions of where this money came from. For someone who claims to be a great businessman, Santos isn’t very good at hiding his shady dealings. This is surprising given that he has probably read “The Art of The Deal” at least 10 times as a result of his worship of America’s most overrated businessman.
In addition to these campaign finance scandals, Santos’ other scandals allegations include his involvement in a 2017 credit card-skimming scam, stealing his roommate’s scarf to wear to a “Stop the Steal” rally, owing thousands of dollars in unpaid traffic tickets in multiple states, and of course, a sexual harassment allegation by a congressional aide of his. Oh yeah, he also used to be a drag queen under the name Kitara Ravache in Brazil, something that he basically admitted to. This all sounds so insane and ridiculous that it could be the plot of a Mel Brooks movie. Santos is speedrunning all the controversies a politician could have and is even creating new ones for future politicians to emulate in what will eventually be called the “Santos gauntlet.”
Yet despite all these scandals and controversies, Santos is running for reelection in 2024. He continues to insist upon his innocence and has maintained a level of arrogance and egoism only rivaled by Donald Trump. He has embraced his scandals as part of personal brand in a way that I’ve never seen before. He thrives on the attention from his lies. And despite being a massive liar with a massive ego who should be thrown out of Congress, he’s probably going to win reelection somehow. Until voted out or proven otherwise, George Santos sits alone on his throne of lies and controversy — unless Kanye West runs for Congress.