Most New Yorkers in new survey say George Santos should resign from Congress

Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) is facing growing pressure from New York residents to resign from Congress following a scathing House Ethics report detailing alleged violations of federal crimes.

A new Marist poll of New York voters released Tuesday found three-quarters of New Yorkers believe Santos should resign from Congress, including 83 percent of Long Island residents, whom he represents in the lower chamber.

This sentiment is felt across party lines, with 82 percent of Democrats and 68 percent of Republicans in the Empire State saying they believe the embattled lawmaker should resign.

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Lee M. Miringoff, director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, said support for Santos “has hit rock bottom.”

Santos has been embroiled in a string of controversies but has avoided expulsion from Congress twice this year. He currently faces a total of 23 federal charges ahead of his trial slated to begin in September 2024.

He pleaded not guilty last month to a set of 10 criminal charges in a superseding indictment that accuses the lawmaker of inflating campaign finance reports and charging his donors’ credit cards without authorization.

Santos in May was charged on 13 counts of allegedly misleading donors, fraudulently receiving unemployment benefits and lying on House financial disclosures.

While Santos admitted earlier this year to embellishing parts of his background, he has largely rejected calls to step down from the lower chamber and denied the charges against him.

Santos announced earlier this month he will no longer run for reelection in 2024, an apparent reversal in plans after telling CNN weeks before that he would run for his seat even if he is expelled from the House.

Santos’s decision to leave Congress came on the heels of a report from the House Ethics Committee, which detailed “substantial evidence” that the lawmaker violated federal crimes.

The scathing report, which came after a months-long investigation, said the lawmaker “cannot be trusted.”

“At nearly every opportunity, he placed his desire for private gain above his duty to uphold the Constitution, federal law, and ethical principles,” the report stated.

The Marist poll found other New York leaders are also seeing falling support.

Forty-two percent of respondents said they approved of the job New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) is doing — down from 49 percent in 2021. Forty-one percent said they disapproved of her job performance, and 16 percent were undecided.

When it comes to New York City Mayor Eric Adams, more than 72 percent of respondents said they believe his 2021 campaign did “something wrong” in its dealings with the Turkish government, which are currently under investigation. About 18 percent say Adams has done nothing wrong, and 10 percent were unsure.

Adams has denied responsibility or knowledge of illegal Turkish donations and has not directly been accused of wrongdoing.

“There’s no good news for New York’s major officials,” Miringoff said of the polling.

The poll was conducted among 1,780 New York adults from Nov. 13 to 15. The margin of error for the poll is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Tara Suter contributed.

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