Rep. George Santos, a Republican from New York, is expected to face an investigation by the House Ethics Committee, a move that could derail his already imperiled political career depending on the secretive panel’s findings.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy initially responded “yes” to CNN on Tuesday when asked if the embattled freshman was under investigation by the committee, something even Republicans acknowledge could lead to his removal from Congress if the panel finds serious evidence of wrongdoing.
But McCarthy made a later clarification and said that he meant that Santos is the subject of complaints before the ethics commission.
“There are questions. I hope they are answered,” he said when asked if he expected the commission to investigate Santos.
So far, McCarthy has not called on Santos to resign, previously noting that his fate is for the voters to decide. But he has increasingly suggested that the House ethics investigation could change his stance toward the freshman representative, who hails from a swing district that President Joe Biden won by eight points in 2020.
“The ethics [commission] is moving forward, and if they find anything, we’ll take action,” McCarthy told CNN on Tuesday when asked about the calls for his resignation. “Right now, we don’t allow him to be on committees from the point of view of the questions that have been raised.”