Republican Rep.-elect George Santos of New York admitted in two separate interviews Monday to lying about parts of his resume, but said he has committed no crime and intends to serve in Congress.
Santos has faced scrutiny over discrepancies in his employment and educational history, as well as other public claims he has made about his biography. In interviews with WABC radio and The New York Post – which marked the first times Santos spoke publicly about the controversy – he acknowledged that he had fabricated some facts.
“I am not a criminal. Neither here, nor abroad, in any jurisdiction in the world have I committed any crime,” Santos said in an interview with WABC radio host John Catsimatidis.
“To cut to the chase, I am not a fraud. I’m not some criminal who ripped off the whole country and made up this fictional character and ran for Congress. I’ve been here a long time. I mean, a lot of people know me. They know who I am. They have done business with me,” he added.
“I’m not going to make excuses for this, but a lot of people exaggerate on their résumés or change them up a bit…I’m not saying I’m not guilty of that,” he said.
Santos also admitted that he never worked directly for the financial firms Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, as he previously suggested, but claimed that he did work for them through his company, telling The New York Post that it was a “poor choice of words.”