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Santos process much more deserved - LaLota

Rep. LaLota defends Rep. Santos, saying he was given more process than he deserved. Santos faces expulsion due to federal charges.

Rep. Nick LaLota (R-N.Y.) has defended the House Ethics Committee's investigation into Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.), arguing that Santos was given more process than he deserved. During a debate on the expulsion, LaLota emphasized that while the proceeding was not governed by due process clauses, Santos received ample opportunities to address the accusations against him.

Santos has repeatedly claimed that he was not afforded due process and has characterized the investigation as "rushed." However, LaLota and House Ethics Committee Chairman Michael Guest (R-Miss.) have dismissed these claims, pointing to Santos's decision not to testify before the committee.

LaLota highlighted that Santos had been invited to confront the accusations and chose not to take advantage of that opportunity. He also rejected the argument that New York voters should have the chance to decide Santos's fate in the 2024 election, emphasizing that voters in 2022 were not fully informed about the candidate they were supporting.

The House is scheduled to vote on expelling Santos from the lower chamber following the Ethics Committee's report, which found "substantial evidence" that Santos had committed serious federal crimes and stated that he "cannot be trusted." This report has reignited calls for Santos's expulsion, with lawmakers who previously supported him now indicating that they will vote to remove him from office.

Santos has faced two previous expulsion attempts this year and is currently facing a total of 23 federal charges, including wire fraud, inflated campaign reports, money laundering, and misuse of campaign contributions. He has pleaded not guilty to these charges and is expected to go to trial in September 2024.

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