George Santos’ claims are a danger to democracy



Santos in the Capitol chambers.

Varenya Rao-Mallela, Lifestyle Editor

As a successful, gay and Jewish second generation immigrant, the Long Island Republican representative claimed to be “the full embodiment of the American Dream” during his candidacy. Santos defeated Robert Zimmerman (D) in the New York 3rd Congressional District election last November.

However, evidence of extreme fabrications regarding his resume and qualifications have since surfaced. Nearly Santos’ entire campaign seems to have been built on lies. This puts forth a major problem regarding the accountability of public officials. The only way to trust that a representative is reliable is through their display of honesty. Santos has completely dishonored this concept with his “embellishments,” and arguably does not deserve a position in public office.

Investigations commissioned by the New York Times and others have revealed the lack of evidence for the claims on Santos’ resume.

Santos claimed to have graduated from Baruch College in 2010, however the institute reported that there is no record of anyone with his name and birthdate in their system. Additionally, an independent investigation conducted by the New York Times revealed that during the time he claimed to be attending Baruch, he was visiting Brazil, where local authorities say he stole a checkbook and used it to make fraudulent purchases. While he admitted to the crime and was charged for it, he was unresponsive to official summons from his local court prosecutor.

Santos’ criminal history is reason enough to re-elect a more trustworthy official. In addition, the mere fact that Santos falsified a major aspect of his education continues to discredit his position in office.

The congressman also claimed to have worked at global investment banking companies Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, however neither firm has records of his employment, further calling into question his resume. His “family firm,” Devolder, has reportedly made over $1 million in dividends and has $80 million in assets, however the company has no public websites and zero reported clients. Additionally, Santos claimed to have many real estate properties, however he has not disclosed them nor could the Times find any records of those properties.

Even disregarding the issues with his blatant falsehood, concerns regarding his ability to represent the people emerge when his occupation is unknown; where did he acquire the skills he needs to be in office, and what has he done in his life that makes him worthy to be a congressman?

Beyond these fraudulent and fabricated claims, there are also social concerns surrounding Santos.

He claims to be openly gay, however records show that Santos was married to a woman, though some believe it was to help her immigrate. If, however, Santos is not gay, he has created a false representation of the LGBTQ community in public office, which is extremely harmful to affirming individuals.

To add, Santos’ mother comes from a line of persecuted Ukrainian Jews. In his campaign statement, he claimed “[a]s a proud American Jew, I have been to Israel numerous times for educational, business, and leisurely trips,” implying that Santos is Jewish. However, he has also claimed to be “Jew-ish,” on numerous occasions, contradicting his campaign statement.

Many Americans have been upset by such lies. In Nassau County, Jewish leaders and residents are outraged and upset. Many people are urging him to resign from the position. This poses a conflict regarding future politics. How can the American public be sure that their representatives are who they say they are?

Public officials have an obligation to be reliable and dependable, and there is a complete lack of accountability in George Santos’ actions. It is important for those in office to remain transparent and honest. Public openness promotes a stronger democracy and ensures that citizens know who and what represents them. It is vital that the district re-evaluates their congressman and his authority to be serving the people.