Democrats spar over Santos strategy as GOP punts on bid to expel him


House Democrats wrangled internally on Wednesday over whether to try to stop Speaker Kevin McCarthy from punting on a bid to expel George Santos from Congress.

The tensions surfaced during a closed-door Democratic caucus meeting, hours before Republicans prevailed in a vote to quash Rep. Robert Garcia’s (D-Calif.) privileged resolution ejecting the indicted Santos from his seat. Some Democrats argued in favor of of blocking McCarthy’s push to refer the Garcia plan to the House Ethics panel — which, had it succeeded, would have forced a full House vote on booting the scandal-plagued New York Republican — according to two people familiar with the situation.

After all, those Democrats reasoned, the whole point of Garcia’s push is squeezing the House GOP to go on the record protecting Santos, their fabrication-happy first-term member who faces 13 counts of federal charges.