The House Republican leadership is asking itself a very important question — will Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) resign on his own volition? Or will the freshman lawmaker be the first member expelled by the House in more than two decades?
The only way the House would avoid voting on an expulsion resolution is if Santos resigns.
The most likely scenario is that a member will go to the floor today and ask for Rep. Michael Guest’s (R-Miss.) resolution — which calls for expelling Santos — to be considered as privileged. That would start a two-day clock on the vote.
Several other members have said they would file their own expulsion resolutions against Santos if needed, including Rep. Robert Garcia (D-Calif.), who tried to expel Santos earlier this year.
Santos has said he will hold a news conference Thursday on the Capitol steps. No one we spoke to in the leadership knows what he will say.
Santos said in an X Spaces event Friday night that he was “not going to resign” because doing so is akin to copping to the allegations in the House Ethics Committee’s damning report detailing his misdeeds.
But Santos hasn’t been a reliable narrator on anything in his life, meaning no one is quite sure what he’ll do here.
The question about what Santos will do was heightened Monday morning when Speaker Mike Johnson said during a news conference in Sarasota, Fla., that he spoke to Santos “at length” over the Thanksgiving break “about his options.” Johnson said that “it remains to be seen” whether the House will vote to expel Santos.
Santos, for his part, said he told Johnson that he would “be standing for the expulsion vote.”
“Expel me and set the precedent so we can see who the judge, jury and executioners in Congress are,” Santos said. “The American people deserve to know!”
One other thing to note: House Majority Leader Steve Scalise and Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik have been awfully quiet on what they think of Santos and whether they support his expulsion.
— Jake Sherman