Mr Santos refused to answer questions from reporters concerning his background and finances after he was found to have fabricated large parts of his resume, making false claims about his and his family’s past, and amid scrutiny that one of his aides pretended to be the chief of staff for Speaker Kevin McCarthy during a fundraising call.
Rachel Scott, a congressional reporter for ABC News, posted a video on Monday in which Mr Santos is followed by a number of reporters attempting to get him to talk about the allegations against him.
“George Santos spent another day dodging questions on Capitol Hill as he’s accused of fabricating almost every single part of his life,” Ms Scott tweeted.
She also posted a second video in which Mr Santos said he would “be addressing the media soon… on my time”.
“You’re accused of fabricating almost every single part of your life. Why do you deserve to represent the people of New York?” Ms Scott asked Mr Santos. Another reporter questioned Mr Santos about his finances.
The congressman didn’t respond to the queries, instead asking for “a little personal space” as he walked towards an elevator.
Santos ignores questions again: “I’ll be addressing the media soon… on my time.” pic.twitter.com/nMfwYH8fwc
— Rachel Scott (@rachelvscott) January 9, 2023
“Did you misuse campaign finances?” Ms Scott subsequently asked Mr Santos, to which he said he would speak to the media later.
Mr Santos has come under scrutiny after doubts were raised about his claims that his grandparents escaped the Holocaust and changed their last name to avoid repercussions as Ukrainian Jewish refugees escaping from Belgium.
The congressman, who also has faced pushback on a number of other claims he has made about his background, has referred to himself as “half Jewish” and a “Latino Jew” when speaking to the press.
He has also said that his grandparents became Catholics as the Nazis garnered more of a presence in Belgium after they had fled the Soviet Union and its leader Joseph Stalin. In addition, Mr Santos has said that his family changed names to survive.
Several genealogists told CNN there was no evidence supporting these claims.
Mr Santos has faced questions regarding his past following a New York Times report that much of his resume appears to be fake, including details regarding his education and workplace history.
“I’m very proud of my Jewish heritage,” he said during an appearance with the Jewish News Syndicate. “I’m very proud of my grandparents’ story. My grandfather fleeing Ukraine, fleeing Stalin’s persecution, going to Belgium, finding refuge there, marrying my grandmother, then fleeing Hitler going to Brazil. That’s a story of perseverance. I’m so proud. I mean, I wish I could have met my grandfather.”
“My grandparents survived the Holocaust, so these regimes of socialism, Marxism, they don’t work, and they’re followed up by a lot of hurt, and we’re seeing that currently and what’s happening in Ukraine with the Russians,” he said in May.
Mr Santos has admitted that he didn’t graduate from Baruch College or worked for Goldman Sachs as well as Citigroup.
The Campaign Legal Center filed a complaint against Mr Santos on Monday with the Federal Election Commission.
Senior researcher Roger Wieand said that “our allegations against Santos fall into three categories: I. that he concealed the true sources of his campaign’s funding; II. that he misrepresented his campaign’s spending; and III. that he illegally paid for personal expenses with his campaign’s funds,” Newsweek reported.