(NewsNation) — Incoming New York Congressman George Santos admitted to lying about multiple parts of his resume, and the man who interviewed him said a “failure of the system” allowed the Republican’s fabrications to go undetected.
John Catsimatidis, owner of WABC radio in Manhattan, had Santos on his radio show Monday to discuss the allegations that were first reported by The New York Times. Among them were that Santos never graduated college and misrepresented who he worked for.
The allegations all turned out to be true.
Santos told WABC Radio and The New York Post that he did in fact never graduate from college, despite claiming he did. He also claimed to have worked for Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, though it was merely just work for those companies through his actual employer.
“I did extensive work on the LP side with Goldman Sachs … I did extensive work with Citigroup in my time at the LP position. So the way it’s stated on the resume, doing work for, I have worked for, not on or at or in. … Yeah, I understand that and let that be a lesson for everybody,” Santos said in the WABC interview.
Santos apologized for embellishing his resume but said he would not resign his seat in Congress as some have called for.
If “he thought would get a few extra votes, he appealed to that audience. But I looked at it a failure of the system,” Catsimatidis said Tuesday on “CUOMO.” “It’s a failure of the Republicans to catch those mistakes, and it’s a failure of the Democrats to do opposition research and catch those mistakes.”
The New York Times investigation found a litany of discrepancies between what Santos was telling voters and his actual background.
He claims to have graduated from Baruch College in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and finance, but the Times found that the school could not find any records of anyone matching his name or date of birth. Santos now admits that he never graduated from any college.
He’s also accused of lying about his family background. He stated on his campaign website that his mother was Jewish and his grandparents fled the Nazis during World War II.
Santos told the New York Post his grandmother told stories about being Jewish and later converting to Catholicism.
“I never claimed to be Jewish,” Santos told The New York Post. “I am Catholic. Because I learned my maternal family had a Jewish background I said I was ‘Jew-ish.'”
The GOP chairman in Nassau County, New York, blasted Santos for the fabrications, but otherwise, Republican leaders in the House have been silent about the controversy. On the other side of the aisle, Democrats including Reps. Joaquin Castro of Texas and Ted Lieu of California have called on Santos to resign.
Catsimatidis believes the “process” needs to play out.
“What do you do about it? He did get elected. Does the U.S. attorney indict him? Does the district attorney indict him? Does the attorney general indict him? There’s the old adage, ‘You can indict a ham sandwich if you want,'” Catsimatidis said. “There’s a process in our country that should have checks and balances and find out the extent of the guilt, but they should have caught it before the election.”
There’s also the issue of politics. Republicans will have only a 222-213 majority in January, leaving House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy — who is seeking the speaker — with few votes to spare.
“If the future speaker Kevin McCarthy (had) 20 or 30 votes, then I guess he could be a little more forceful, Catsimatidis said, “but right now, they have a very tight margin of error.”