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House passes resolution to refer Santos expulsion to Ethics panel instead of voting to expel him

The floor vote to refer the Santos matter to the House Ethics Committee, rather than a direct vote to expel him from the House, took place on Wednesday

Published: May 17, 2023 1:37pm

Updated: May 17, 2023 6:04pm

The GOP-led House voted along party lines 221-204 to refer to the House Ethics Committee a resolution to expel New York GOP Rep. George Santos from the chamber rather than vote on the resolution itself.

There were 7 Democrats who voted present. 

Santos was indicted last week and pleaded not guilty to 13 federal charges, which include providing false information about his personal finances on U.S. House disclosure reports, unemployment benefit fraud and misuse of 2022 campaign funds.

California Democratic Rep. Robert Garcia had been leading the charge for a direct floor vote on the resolution.

"We're going to continue to beat this drum every single day. George Santos should not be in Congress," he said on Wednesday. 

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said he hopes the committee moves rapidly to address the Santos situation.

"I think we can look at this very quickly and come to a conclusion on what George Santos did and did not do through ethics, a safe bipartisan committee," McCarthy said. "I would like the Ethics Committee to move rapidly on this."

Ahead of the vote, Garcia criticized the House GOP leadership for not holding a direct vote on the resolution to expel Santos.

"Sending this bill back to the Ethics Committee instead of a floor vote does nothing to keep Santos accountable,"  he said. "The American people deserve better."

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