Disgraced former representative George Santos ends race for new House seat

George Santos had dropped out of his independent bid for a second spot in the House of Representatives months after being ousted from his New York seat.

“I have decided to withdraw from my independent run for #NY1,” Mr Santos wrote on X on Tuesday evening. The former representative first announced his bid for the seat representing Long Island in March.

The news came after Mr Santos made a surprise appearance at President Joe Biden’s 2024 State of the Union address, despite being expelled from Congress just months earlier.

George Santos pictured in March attending the State of the Union. One month after announcing his bid for a second congressional seat, Mr Santos has dropped out of the race (AFP via Getty Images)

“I don’t want my run to be portrayed as reprisal against Nick Lalota… Although Nick and I don’t have the same voting record and I remain critical of his abysmal record, I don’t want to split the ticket and be responsible for handing the house to Dems,” Mr Santos continued. His incumbent GOP opponent, Mr Lalota, was first elected in 2023.

“I will continue to participate in the public policy discussion and will do my part… I will always strive to stand on the right side of history,” Mr Santos wrote.

Meanwhile, Mr Santos is currently facing 23 federal criminal charges, including charges of wire fraud, money laundering, and theft of public funds.

In March 2023, the House Ethics Committee launched an investigation into the then-New York lawmaker, who was first elected in 2022. Two months later, the Department of Justice handed him the first thirteen indictments — and he was arrested the next day.

In October, Mr Santos was then hit with a 23-count superseding indictment, adding another ten charges to his total. The former congressman has denied all the allegations and has pleaded not guilty.

Mr Santos was subsequently expelled from the US House of Representatives in a 311 to 114 vote on 1 December 2023.

The former congressman made headlines just last week after making a mysterious appearance outside of former president Donald Trump’s criminal trial in New York. Mr Santos was passing by the Manhattan Criminal Court on his way to a hearing in his own court case: A lawsuit against late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel.

The former congressman alleges Mr Kimmel deceived him into making more than a dozen videos on Cameo — a mobile app that allows users to pay for personalised videos from celebrities — that Mr Kimmel then played on his show “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”

Despite facing many legal woes already, Mr Santos sued him in February for copyright infringement, fraudulent inducement, breach of contract and unjust enrichment.

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