A House Democrat introduced a resolution Tuesday afternoon to expel GOP Rep. George Santos.
The motion offered by freshman Democratic congressman Robert Garcia is privileged, so House GOP can have until Thursday to schedule the vote. It is not yet clear exactly when the vote will take place.
The move is expected to fail, but will put House Republicans on the record over the indicted congressman, who faces calls to resign from within his own party. Facing a slim majority and a critical debt ceiling battle, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy can ill-afford to lose a single GOP vote.
GOP leaders are debating how to handle the resolution to expel Santos, according to a Republican source. Since it is “privileged,” the House has to act within two days.
If they vote to table it, it would require a majority vote to succeed, meaning McCarthy can’t afford to lose more than four GOP votes.
If the tabling motion failed, then the House would have to vote on the underlying resolution.
If they go straight to a vote on the underlying resolution, then it would require a vote of two-thirds of the House to succeed. McCarthy has previously signaled he wouldn’t favor this route until the House Ethics Committee finishes its probe. GOP leaders have until Thursday to decide.
Santos has pleaded not guilty to 13 federal charges, including allegations of fraud related to Covid-19 unemployment benefits, misusing campaign funds and lying about his personal finances on House disclosure reports.
The one-page resolution reads: “Resolved, That, pursuant to Article I, Section 5, Clause 2 of the Constitution of the United States, Representative George Santos, be, and he hereby is, expelled 4 from the House of Representatives.”
In a statement, Garcia said that Santos “needs to be expelled by the House,” adding, “news that federal prosecutors are filing 13 criminal charges against George Santos should have been the final straw for Kevin McCarthy, but he refuses to act.”