By Heillie Santana, 11th Grade
Though he may be only 34 years old, Congressman George Santos has already made a name for himself with his many incredible achievements. Coming from a family of Brazilian immigrants, Santos graduated from Baruch College and soon after worked for firms like Goldman Sachs and Citigroup. Eventually, he became a successful financier who started an animal rescue charity. Santos’ biography seems excellent! But is it almost too good to be true?
Well, that’s what the New York Times believed as they came out with a shocking exposition of the congressman. According to the Times, Santos not only exaggerated his resume but completely fabricated it. They found that Santos did not attend Baruch College or receive an M.B.A. as he claimed. But his fibbing doesn’t end there—the Times found even more holes in his resume.
Santos claimed he worked under Citigroup as an associate asset product manager from February 2011 to January 2014. His varying responsibilities under the company were “consumer education of new opportunities” and “investment orientation on LP base.” Santos also has claimed to have had a “2x Revenue Growth (300M to 600M)” during his 7-month stay at Goldman Sachs. However, neither company have any record of Santos working for them.
To add to the web of lies, the animal charity that Santos claims to have found does not seem to exist. Santos’ animal charity, Friends of Pets United, was claimed to be a tax-exempt organization. However, there is no record of any registered organization under that name.
So, when it comes to Mr. Santos, it’s hard to separate fact from fiction. But here’s what’s actually true about him: an openly gay man residing in New York, George Santos won election to an open congressional seat in New York’s 3rd Congressional District in November of last year, beating out Democratic opponent Rob Zimmerman.
The voters of this affluent congressional district located in Long Island had identified George Santos as a diverse, intelligent, young new face who would bring efficiency back to Washington, using his experiences and expertise from his successful gigs at Goldman Sachs and Citigroup. His seemingly strong resume aided his electoral campaign, allowing him to clench a victory for the Republicans in what used to be a Democratic-held seat, in a midterm election that was majorly underwhelming for the GOP and its supporter base.
However, George Santos’ empowerment as a promising candidate, along with his rise to glory, was short-lived, as profound deceitfulness was uncovered before he was inaugurated into Congress in January of the current year.
His fabricated resume is only the tip of the iceberg of numerous scandals that have landed him in hot water. In 2016, George Santos is alleged to have stolen $3,000 dollars from a GoFundMe page that sought to raise funds for the funeral of a disabled veteran’s dog. It is reported that Santos started the GoFundMe page while he led the “Friends of Pets United” after the veteran was connected to the organization. Instead of using the collected funds to finance the funeral, George Santos instead deleted the fundraiser and disappeared with the money.
To make matters worse, it looks like Congressman Santos’ legal problems aren’t exclusive to the United States. In fact, it was revealed on January 3rd, 2023, that Brazilian authorities would be reopening an investigation into the embattled Congressman for crimes he may have committed on Brazilian territory. The charges levied against the Congressman in Rio de Janeiro include accounts of fraud and embezzlement—including to the extent that he had previously been charged with embezzlement in 2011 in a Brazilian court, in addition to his personal confession that he had used stolen checks in Brazil in 2008.
So obviously it’s starting to look like George Santos is more of a career criminal rather than a public servant with his constituents’ best interests at heart. These actions appear outrageous and uncalled-for coming from a United States Representative. However, what if I were to tell you that the rabbit hole goes even deeper? What if, per se, I were to tell you that “George Santos” might not even be his real name? Yup, you heard that right! But don’t take it from me, take it from the man himself who has, on numerous occasions, introduced himself as “Anthony Devoulder”, instead of the name we now know him by. It is a real possibility that George Anthony Devoulder Santos has been using 2 different identities, fluctuating over time to portray himself in environments where he deems one name more appropriate (or beneficial) than the other.
All in all, George Santos is the embodiment of political deceit and an utter failure of information and intelligence when it comes to electing representatives to serve the will of the people. And even though it is unlikely that George Santos will be shown the door from his position as the Congressman from New York’s 3rd Congressional district anytime soon, due to hesitation from House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and his slim Republican majority to expel one of their own, it is more likely than not that, upon the convention of the next election, George Anthony Devoluder Santos will meet the demise of his political career at the hands of voters—the American people.