Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) may be getting pushed out of Congress, but he’s making it clear that he won’t be leaving quietly.
The embattled lawmaker announced Thursday morning that he will move to force a vote on expelling Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) from the House, just over one month after the New York Democrat was charged with a misdemeanor for falsely pulling a fire alarm in a House office building ahead of a key vote. He pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor and agreed to pay a fine and write an apology to the Capitol Police.
Santos — who faces 23 federal criminal counts — unveiled his plans during a press conference outside the Capitol on Thursday, one day before the House is poised to hold a vote on expelling him after the House Ethics Committee released a damning report on the congressman. The panel’s work found that Santos “violated federal criminal laws,” and said he used campaign funds for personal use, including trips, Botox and for purchases from OnlyFans, a subscription platform that is largely used for adult content.
The effort to expel Santos has widespread support from both sides of the aisle, with a wave of lawmakers getting on board following the release of the Ethics Committee report. Santos already survived two expulsion efforts earlier this year.
The New York Republican said he will call his measure to expel Bowman to the floor as a privileged resolution when the House opens for legislative business at noon, a maneuver that forces the chamber to act on the measure within two legislative days. Leadership, however, will likely hold a procedural vote instead of a referendum on the actual legislation, shielding the chamber from having to weigh in on expelling Bowman directly.
Bowman, who for months has called on Santos to resign, was charged with a misdemeanor last month after he pulled the fire alarm during a vote to fund the government. In a statement at the time, the Congressman said he pulled the alarm by mistake when he was rushing to get to the House chamber before a high-stakes vote closed. Republicans, however, accused him of pulling the alarm on purpose to delay the vote.
Bowman’s office said he made an agreement with the D.C. attorney general to withdraw the charge in three months if he writes an apology to the Capitol Police and pays a $1,000 fine.
Last week, the House Ethics Committee announced that it would not launch an investigation into the incident. Santos reacted to that determination, writing on X: “I’m just going to leave this here and let the people draw their own conclusions…”
Santos and Bowman have clashed in the past. In May, after the House voted to refer a Santos expulsion resolution to the Ethics Committee, Santos was addressing the press on the steps of the Capitol when Bowman and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) began yelling for him to leave Congress.
“Resign … save yourself, have some dignity,” Bowman said. “New Yorkers need better.”
“Republicans, kick him out, c’mon,” Bowman added.