Tag Archives: Election 2022

NY 3rd Constituents Rally to Demand Disgraced Republican Congressman-Elect George Santos Resign

“I am angry and frustrated too,” Democratic Congressional candidate Robert Zimmerman declared. “But the answer is all of us, demanding a House ethics investigation, investigations at federal, state and local levels, making sure George Santos does not stay in Congress. That’s not Democratic or Republican politics. It’s about protecting democracy, standing up for justice against corruption and George Santos’ fraud. At stake: democracy, faith in the integrity of our political system and the American Dream.” © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, News-Photos-Features.com

Asked if he feels cheated out of being elected to US Congress, the Democrat Robert Zimmerman who was defeated by Republican George Santos now being exposed as a fraudster who falsified his career and finances, was emphatic that it was the constituents, the political process and democracy itself Santos cheated.

“It’s not about me,” Zimmerman declared. “It’s about restoring integrity to our political process. The fact Santos thought he could get away with it – this is the antidote. The fact we’re here.”

And they came out in sizable numbers for a press conference at rally in front of the Nassau County Courthouse, calling for Santos to resign and for the Republican leadership to refuse to seat him, and carrying signs including “Make lying wrong again,” “Santos lies. Democracy dies.” “Follow the money.”

Prosecutors at the federal, state and local level have already announced investigations into how Santos, who only two years ago reported earning $55,000 a year, managed to loan his campaign $700,000 and declare income and assets in the multi-millions of dollars.

State Assemblyman Charles Lavine reflected that everyone gathered has the same trauma as any victim of a crime, a fraud, a Ponzi scheme. “the difference is the first few get some of their money back, but we, the citizens of the 3rd District are left holding the bag, the laughingstock of the United States and international community.”

“What do you say to those around here who depend on government to protect their version of the American Dream? Resigning is the way to preserve the American Dream,” youth activist Greg Leung of Great Neck said © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Greg Leung, a youth activist from Great Neck and freshman at Boston University where he is studying political science and is thinking about entering government or politics, reflected the feelings of many young people, new voters, who have a right to be disillusioned, jaded, cynical about the political process.

“As a first generation American, in the extraordinary position of a Congressman elect, you are living the American Dream, a set of ideals that those who came before fought so vehemently to defend. The American Dream is an ideal nurtured over centuries – Government for, by the people with integrity. Lately, people like you resorted to deception to take power, eroding the American Dream you  vowed to defend in the campaign. You lied for your own gain. Most vile, you lied about the Holocaust and mass shooting…. What do you say to those around here who depend on government to protect their version of the American Dream? Resigning is the way to preserve the American Dream,” Leung said.

Linda Beigel Schulman: “This is not a matter of politics or party. It is about right versus wrong, lying versus trust, deception versus honesty. NY 3rd needs a Congressman who is honest, who we can trust.” © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Linda Beigel Schulman, who is a daughter of an actual Holocaust survivor as well as the victim of her son’s murder by the Parkland shooter, “1800 days ago,” spoke of the pain and trauma of being re-victimized by Santos’ false claims of his grandparents having fled the Holocaust and having had four employees killed in the Pulse Nightclub massacre.

My father lived in Ukraine, in Kiev. He slept in the forest, in bomb craters evading Nazis for years. He went to Canada and then the US. Others in his family were not so lucky. He would not speak of it, except in an interview by Spielberg’s organization.

“It is insulting and demeaning to every child of a Holocaust survivor.  “How dare you lie about being a child of Holocaust survivors, or being Jew-ish? You lied about having four employees at Pulse. How dare he try to gain sympathy. I know all too well the sense of loss, the grief from gun violence.

“Lying has become commonplace and worse, accepted. Outright lying shouldn’t be accepted by anyone. Integrity matters,” she declared. “Lies are analogous to a virus, afflicting pain, fever, sometimes killing the host. We the people have become an infected host. If we accept lying from political leaders, it will surely destroy our fiber. The antidote is we the people, here today. We are the antidote. This country was founded on We the people, not lies.’

Schulman thanked Republicans Nassau County Executive Blakeman, DA Donnelly, incoming Congressmen Anthony D’Esposito and Nick Lalota for speaking out, calling for a full investigation.

“This is not a matter of politics or party. It is about right versus wrong, lying versus trust, deception versus honesty. NY 3rd needs a Congressman who is honest, who we can trust.”

Rabbi Deborah Bravo of the MakomNY Worship Center in Bethpage, said Santos’ lies about his Jewish ancestry were particularly offensive. “To lie about being descendants of Holocaust survivors for the purpose of political gain is beyond unacceptable..No one has the right to presume this ancestry for the purpose of political gain and empathy from constituents.”

State Senator Anna Kaplan: “George Santos has perpetrated a complete and total fraud on our community, but we cannot forget that for the last three years, he was enabled and supported by the entire Nassau County Republican machine and his Republican running mates,” © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

State Senator Anna Kaplan cast blame on the Republicans at the local and federal level who propped Santos up and who are complicit in Santos’ fraud.

 “George Santos has perpetrated a complete and total fraud on our community, but we cannot forget that for the last three years, he was enabled and supported by the entire Nassau County Republican machine and his Republican running mates, many of whom sit in elected office today and others who will soon take office. The questions about exactly who George Santos are not new, but they were brushed aside and minimized by local Republicans desperate to flip this congressional seat at any cost.

“Our entire community has been victimized, and we demand accountability. George Santos must be investigated by all appropriate authorities, particularly surrounding his shady business dealings and mystery millions that seem to have appeared overnight despite having no legitimate career to speak of. The outstanding criminal charges against George Santos in Brazil must be answered for. And we all deserve an apology for his reprehensible lies about his nonexistent Jewish faith and his completely fake connection to the Holocaust.

“To allow George Santos to be seated as a member of Congress would be a further knife in the heart of this community, and I’m urging Congressional Republican leadership to stop that from happening while investigations are ongoing.”

Kaplan added, “I’m also calling on every Republican in Nassau County who stood with this man over the course of the last three years to apologize to the voters, and renounce their support, along with every organization who endorsed his candidacy.”

Lavine noted, “Each of us is a victim of fraud – whoever represents the 3rd district acts not just for 3rd but the United States. But top of the list of victims of Santos’ fraud is Robert Zimmerman.”

“It’s not about me,” Robert Zimmerman, the Democratic Congressional candidate who Santos defeated, declared. “It’s about restoring integrity to our political process.” © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

“I am angry and frustrated too,” Zimmerman declared. “But the answer is all of us. Standing here today, demanding a House ethics investigation, investigations at federal, state and local levels, making sure Santos does not stay in Congress. That’s not Democratic or Republican politics. It’s about protecting democracy, standing up for justice against corruption and Santos’ fraud. At stake: democracy, faith in the integrity of our political system, the American Dream.”

At least one in the crowd of hundreds was a Republican who not only voted for George Santos, but helped elect him.

Buyers’ remorse: George Santos’ supporter Teodora Choolfaian plans to tell Santos to resign © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Teodora Choolfaian said she left the Democratic party, registered Republican and backed Santos over the issue of COVID-mitigation in public schools. Santos came to the rallies she held, and seemed to embrace her call to end mask mandates in school.

But at the rally calling for Santos to resign, she said she believed she had been deceived by Santos. One of her concerns is the source of Santos’ funding – as recently as 2020, he reported a salary of $55,000. In this cycle, his financial disclosures reported a salary of $750,000 plus assets of millions of dollars, without accounting for the source.

She now is calling upon him to resign Santos is worse than you think,” she told reporters.

She will tell Santos as much when she sees him at the swearing in, at the Capitol on January 3, to which she has been invited.

“Follow the money”: Great Neck constituents Bob Fowler, Jody finkel, Sally Marzouk at rally calling for incoming Republican Congressman George Santos to resign © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Indeed, Santos’ campaign finance disclosures are now being investigated by the US Attorney, the New York State Attorney General and the Nassau County District Attorney.

A search of the FEC.gov database shows that Santos raised $2.933,614 for his 2022 campaign, including $1,001,151 in itemized individual contributions, $464,406  in unitemized individual contributions,  $12,950 in party committee contributions, $247,551 in other committee contributions, $487,258 in transfers from other authorized committees, $705,000 in loans the candidate made to himself.

The Santos campaign reported spending $3,017,602 in operating expenditures. (https://www.fec.gov/data/committee/C00721365/).

While a sitting congressman cannot be removed for lying about his background – though the House Ethics committee might see fit to censure him – actual federal crimes are another matter. But investigation and prosecution would take months, possibly years. So New York’s 3rd Congressional district may have to be resigned to waiting to 2024.

See also:

Constituents Call for Federal Investigation into Crimes Arising from George Santos Campaign

Viewpoint: Who owns George Santos? That is the question


© 2022 News & Photo Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. For editorial feature and photo information, go to www.news-photos-features.com, email [email protected]. Blogging at www.dailykos.com/blogs/NewsPhotosFeatures. ‘Like’ us on facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures, Tweet @KarenBRubin

Democrats Deserve to Boast Over Historic Progress in Biden’s First 2 Years

US Senator Chuck Schumer with NY Governor Kathy Hochul and NYC Mayor Eric Adams at the 2022 Lunar New Year Parade in Chinatown. Senator Schumer, the Senate Majority Leader, is touting historic progress since Democrats took control of Congress and the White House © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Washington, D.C.   Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) released the following statement on the historic achievements made by Senate Democrats since President Biden took office:

“There are two words that I believe perfectly summarize the Senate under Democratic leadership: productive and bipartisan. To even do small things in the Senate is tough. To pass major pieces of bipartisan legislation in the longest evenly divided Senate in history is a testament to Democrats’ persistence and hard work to deliver for the American people,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said.

“On top of all the major accomplishments last year, in 2022 alone, we passed a significant postal reform bill over a decade in the making. We passed a bold and robust government funding package which included the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. We passed critical emergency aid for the people of Ukraine. We passed the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching bill, after a century of waiting. We confirmed the first Black woman to the Supreme Court. We passed the first gun safety legislation in 30 years. We passed an historic investment in America’s future with the CHIPS and Science Act. We passed legislation to help our veterans suffering from the effects of toxic burn pits. And we passed the Inflation Reduction Act which will lower costs for prescription drugs, fight climate change and cut down on inflation and the deficit.”

Lowering Costs, Creating Jobs, And Taking Historic Action to Fight Climate Change. The Senate passed the Inflation Reduction Act, historic legislation that will lower drug and energy costs, create jobs, reduce the deficit, and take the most significant action ever to fight climate change.

Delivering Critically Needed Historic Legislation To Rebuild Our Crumbling Infrastructure. The Bipartisan Infrastructure law is “the biggest public-works bill since former President Eisenhower created the interstate highway system in 1956.” The infrastructure law includes the largest-ever investment in clean drinking water, the largest-ever investment in public transit, the largest investment in passenger rail since the creation of Amtrak, and the largest investment in clean energy transmission and EV infrastructure in U.S. history. Across the country, Senate Democrats have held event after event to spread the word about the direct impact these investments will have on their communities. And the Senate passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2022.

Providing Critical Support For American Families. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, more than 160 million Americans received economic impact payments. The American Rescue Plan provided tens of billions of dollars to support vaccination and testing in response to the COVID pandemic. The 2022 funding law includes historic investments in our communities.

Supercharging American Innovation and Laying the Groundwork for a New Century of American Leadership. President Biden signed the Chips and Science Act, critical legislation to boost American competitiveness, ease supply chains, invest in scientific research, incentivize semiconductor manufacturing, and create jobs. President Biden signed bipartisan ocean shipping legislation to ease supply chains and drive down costs of shipped goods.

Righting Wrongs For Our Veterans and Their Families. The Senate passed and President Biden signed historic legislation to help veterans exposed to burn pits access the care they need for injuries sustained serving their country.

Enacting The First Major Gun Safety Law in Decades. President Biden signed the most significant gun safety legislation in 30 years, including incentives for red flag laws, closing the “boyfriend loophole,” creating new federal straw purchasing and trafficking criminal offenses, and funding a historic expansion of mental health services. And the Senate confirmed the first permanent Director of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives since 2015.

Supporting and Modernizing the Postal Service. The Senate passed bipartisan legislation to invest in the Post Office and improve delivery.

Protecting Americans Against Hunger. President Biden signed the FORMULA Act and the Access to Baby Formula Act to expand the availability of baby formula. And President Biden signed the Keep Kids Fed Act to extend funding for healthy meals for children over the summer.

Making Historic Steps to Restore the Judiciary. Senate Democrats confirmed the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. Thanks to Senate Democrats, President Biden has had 75 District and Circuit Court judicial nominees confirmed. And, according to FiveThirtyEight, “Biden’s judges are breaking records on diversity.”

Supporting The People of Ukraine Against Putin’s Illegal War And Holding Russia Accountable. Senate Democrats passed and President Biden signed legislation to provide more than $10 billion in support for the people of Ukraine, followed by an additional $40 billion in emergency aid to Ukraine,suspend Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) with Russia, ban the importation of Russian energy exports, and the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act. And the Senate approved NATO membership for Finland and Sweden.

Ending Forced Arbitration for Survivors of Sexual Assault. President Biden signed a bipartisan bill that ends forced arbitration in workplace sexual assault and harassment cases, allowing survivors to file lawsuits in court against perpetrators.

Fighting Back Against Hate, Crime and Oppression. President Biden signed into law legislation to make lynching a federal hate crime. The COVID-19 Hate Crimes law will allow us to better confront anti-Asian hate crimes. The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, passed unanimously by the Senate, will ban the sale of goods made by Uyghur slave labor and take a stand against the genocide of the Uyghur people. President Biden signed bipartisan legislation to provide support to the victims of crimes. And President Biden signed legislation to commemorate Juneteenth, celebrating the end of slavery in the United States. The Senate passed legislation to streamline research of marijuana. The 2022 Omnibus funding bill also included a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

Undoing the Trump Administration’s Worst Rules and Making Progress in the Fight Against Climate Change. President Joe Biden signed three separate laws to repeal Trump-era rules,“blocking payday lenders from avoiding caps on interest rates, restricting climate-warming greenhouse gas emissions from oil and gas drilling and ending rules on how the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission settles claims.”

Confirming History-Making Nominees. According to the Brookings Institution, the Biden administration made history with “the most diverse set of confirmed appointees.”This includes the first Native American Cabinet Secretary (Sec. Haaland), the first woman to be Secretary of the Treasury (Sec. Yellen), the first Black Secretary of Defense (Sec. Austin), and many more. 

See also: Elect Democrats