Rep. Santos distracts from business. Can the GOP focus on its agenda?

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Rep. George Santos departs a morning GOP Conference meeting on Tuesday, January 31, 2023 at the U.S. Capitol after telling his House Republican colleagues he would recuse himself from his committee positions. Photo by Jack Gruber-USA TODAY/Reuters.

During his first month in Congress, Republican Representative George Santos from New York has been a giant distraction for the new House leadership. 

He was caught lying about parts of his job experience, education and even his heritage. He’s now facing multiple state and federal investigations into his personal and campaign finances. Members from both parties and the majority of his constituents want him to resign. And he announced this week he’s temporarily declining his committee assignments. 

Santos said it was voluntary, and he was stepping down to clear his name and focus on serving his constituents. But what does all the attention on one member tell us about the direction of the new Congress?

The House also voted to remove Representative Ilhan Omar from the foreign relations committee. However, a small group of Republicans want to end the partisan war over committee assignments. Do they want to focus on real business?

Host David Greene discusses with Mo Elleithee, executive director of Georgetown University’s Institute of Politics and Public Service, and Sarah Isgur, senior editor at The Dispatch. 

Plus, the Republican field for the presidential nomination in 2024 has been relatively quiet. Former President Donald Trump is trying to regain momentum. And there has long been speculation that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former Vice President Mike Pence will run as well.

But now, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley says she’ll announce her candidacy this month. Will this turn out to be a contest of personalities? And how do these people represent different visions for GOP leadership?

And the pandemic permanently altered the American workplace. How can downtowns and office managers adjust to a new reality? And what would incentivize people to come back?




David Greene