A “Morning Joe” panel railed against Republican leadership on Tuesday for turning a blind eye and allowing New York Congressman-elect George Santos to lie about his professional and educational background.
Santos, who was elected on Nov. 8 to serve the Long Island- and Queens-based Third District, revealed in an interview with the New York Post that he “never worked directly” for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, calling it a “poor choice of words.” He also admitted that he never graduated from college, despite previously claiming to have received a degree from Baruch in 2010.
Princeton University professor Eddie Glaude Jr. told “Morning Joe” host Jonathan Lemire that lying in politics has become “a kind of consistent feature of the landscape” over the last six years.
“It’s been tolerated, it’s been accepted and let’s be clear, lying has always been a part of politics, right?” Glaude said. “I mean we know that. But to the extent that we’ve been experienced it over the last six years has been kind of overwhelming in terms of the the way in which conversation happens. I think it’s really important here that we have a political party, operatives who knew this, they were OK with it. We have a state political party that is silent with regards to these revelations with regard to Santos. We have leadership, McCarthy and Stefanik, silent with regards to what is being revealed and it shows to my mind a kind of level of corruption, a level of moral corruption I should say, at the heart of a political party that should raise a lot of alarms.”
In addition, Santos, who was accused of lying about his family history after his campaign website stated that his mother was Jewish and his grandparents escaped the Nazis during World War II, said he’s “clearly Catholic.”
“I never claimed to be Jewish,” he said. “I am Catholic. Because I learned my maternal family had a Jewish background I said I was ‘Jew-ish.’”
Multiple sources close to House GOP leadership told the Post that senior House Republicans were aware of Santos’ inaccuracies and embellishments of his resume and that the topic became a “running joke.”
MSNBC political analyst Elise Jordan pointed out that despite at least $1 million in outside spending from Democrat Robert Zimmerman, not one opposition researcher or firm was enlisted to do a dossier or even a credit check on Santos.
“It’s such malpractice,” she said. “It also speaks to the corruption of money in politics where all this money is being spent yet not for any purpose that actually serves the candidate.”
Santos has apologized for embellishing his resume, but told the Post he is “not a criminal.”
“This [controversy] will not deter me from having good legislative success,” he added. “I will be effective. I will be good.”
Watch the full “Morning Joe” segment in the video at the top of this post.