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Disgraced GOP Rep. George Santos Ends Independent Congressional Campaign Without Donations

Expelled ex-Rep. George Santos ends independent campaign, citing concerns over vote-splitting. Raised $0 in first quarter. Plans to return.

Former New York Representative George Santos (R-New York) made headlines on Tuesday when he announced the termination of his independent campaign for a congressional seat. Santos, who was expelled from the House last year, had recently expressed his intention to run as an independent candidate for New York's First Congressional District. However, a recent campaign filing revealed that he had raised $0 in the first quarter, signaling potential challenges ahead.

In a statement released on X, Santos explained his decision to withdraw from the race. He cited concerns over potential vote-splitting with Rep. Nick LaLota (R-New York), which could ultimately benefit the Democrats in securing the seat. LaLota was one of the Republicans who voted to expel Santos in December following the revelation of federal criminal charges against him. Santos, who pleaded not guilty to the fraud charges, is scheduled to stand trial in September.

Prior to his expulsion from Congress, Santos represented New York's 3rd District. Initially declaring his candidacy as a Republican in March, he emphasized the need for a genuine conservative representative for New York. Santos specifically criticized LaLota as an example of an ineffective "RINO" (Republican In Name Only) politician.

However, just two weeks later, Santos reversed his decision and announced his intention to run as an independent. He attributed this change to his dissatisfaction with the Republican-led House's passage of a $1.2 trillion spending bill, which he viewed as an "embarrassing" move made just hours before a government shutdown deadline.

Santos expressed reluctance to split the ticket and potentially contribute to a Democratic majority in the House. In a Terminator-like fashion, he concluded his message with, "I'll be back."

Santos became only the sixth member of Congress to be expelled after an ethics report presented significant evidence of his violation of federal criminal laws. The report alleged that Santos misused campaign funds for personal luxuries, including Botox treatments and payments to "content creators." Despite denying these allegations, Santos has remained active on social media platforms since leaving Congress. He has also engaged with the online platform Cameo, where he creates short, personalized video messages for compensation.

Additionally, Santos filed a lawsuit against late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, accusing him of fraud and copyright infringement. Santos claimed that Kimmel used fictitious identities to request videos, which were later featured on his show. The legal battle between Santos and Kimmel continues to unfold.

In light of these recent developments, Santos's decision to withdraw from the congressional race marks a significant turn of events in his political career. As he navigates the challenges ahead, Santos remains a controversial figure with a complex legacy in the world of politics.

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