Representative Byron Donalds (R-FL) told CNN on Thursday that it was not his place to demand the resignation of his truth-allergic colleague George Santos, only for host Victor Blackwell to remind him that he had no problem with President Joe Biden demand that he resign.
Amid growing fuss over Santos resigning due to the nonstop stream of accusations that he fabricated most of his resume and biography, the freshman New York congressman has remained defiant. Even as most lawmakers from his home state are urging him to quit, Santos has said he will not leave Congress unless everyone who voted for him calls on him to do so.
Despite the vast web of lies he is accused of weaving, House Republicans awarded Santos earlier this week with two commissions on the small business and science committees.
As a member of the influential House Steering Committee that decides which legislators get commission seats, Donalds was asked Thursday about Santos’ qualifications. (Donalds, one of the MAGA remnants on this month’s controversial speaker ballot, got his own selection committee assignments after he flipped his vote for House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.)
The GOP legislator essentially told Blackwell that his hands were tied when it came to putting Santos on several committees — while at the same time justifying the disgraced congressman’s new assignments.
“Specifically for George and this situation, that’s something I really can’t get involved in because that’s between him and his constituents,” the Florida legislator said. “But every member of Congress is actually placed on committees. That’s how the process works.”
He continued: “We are going to put him in committees and if anything else happens later, we will review the decision. But there are members who serve on committees in Congress who have no biographical background of what they did in their lives before Congress. And they sit on these various committees and try to do the best they can on behalf of their district, but also on behalf of the American people.”
Blackwell noted that several House Republicans and most Democrats have now called for Santos to resign as his scandals continue to multiply, and questioned why Donalds has not joined that march.
“Do you think he can serve effectively?” asked Blackwell.
“I think it’s going to be tough, there’s no question about that, but again, if he has the resources to deal with these things caused by him and other things, and still do his job, that’s still too much. review,” the Republican congressman replied.
“As for the growing list of people calling for resignation, no, I didn’t join that,” Donald added. Simply because I don’t think that’s the job of another member of Congress to say or demand that. I think that’s between him and his constituents. He has to deal with that individually.”
However, the CNN anchor brought up an inconvenient truth to push back Donald’s sudden reticence. “Well I will say you called on President Biden to resign and 84 million people voted for him,” Blackwell replied, ending the interview with that farewell shot.
While Blackwell got the number of votes Biden received in the 2020 election wrong (it was actually 81.3 million), he was right that Donalds has called for Biden to resign. In August 2021, the then-freshman legislator insisted that the president “resign immediately” over the “failed withdrawal” from Afghanistan.
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