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Controversial Congressman Jorge Santos is now saying that his mother, who he previously claimed died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, actually died as a result of “toxic dust” from 9/11 in another bizarre explanation.
Speaking to One America News Network, the representative from New York’s 3rd Congressional District addressed a 2021 tweet in which he said “9/11 claimed [his] Mother’s life.” The post, and another tweet in which Mr Santos later said his mother had died on 23 December 2016, many inconsistencies in his biography last year and comments he had made have now been removed.
In his first sit-down interview since taking office, Mr. Santos said he never claimed his mother died on the day of the terror attack, “but she did.” [them]”
“The toxic dust that spread across Manhattan and my mother was present, downtown Manhattan — that’s what I was referring to,” Mr. Santos told OAN’s Caitlin Sinclair in an interview published in its entirety on Saturday. “My mother died in home-hospice in 2016.”
Asked about a review of his immigration history in The New York Times that revealed he was not even in the country at the time of the attack, Mr. Santos said he “didn’t know where it came from,” without elaborating.
“It, to me, remains a mystery, because I was here and I was 13 years old,” he said.
Elsewhere in the interview, Mr. Santos addressed a flurry of media allegations that he had concocted a web of lies to pave his way into Congress.
Mr. Santos admitted that he “embellished” some aspects of his career. Several outlets have since reported that evidence contradicts his education and work history, claims that his grandparents were Holocaust survivors, and that he personally “lost” four of his employees in the 2016 Pulse nightclub tragedy.
But Mr Santos dismissed some of those reports as “false”, saying he was tired of being “talked to” by the media.
“People like me are not supposed to do anything big in life, and when they do, it disrupts the system. A lot of people want to create this narrative that I faked my way into Congress, which is absolutely, patently false,” Mr. Santos said in the interview.
When confronted with genealogists’ comments that there was no evidence to support his alleged Jewish ancestry, he stated that he was told by his grandparents, who are now deceased.
In an earlier interview with Fox News, Mr. Santos insisted he had not lied and had in fact only referred to himself as “Jewish-ish.” Mr Santos told Ms Sinclair that in the past people would “laugh” at the joke.
The congressman has ignored bipartisan calls for him to resign, but announced earlier this week that he would voluntarily resign from two House committees he recently joined after a meeting with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
(Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)
A larger federal investigation is also probing a $700,000 loan Mr. Santos made to his campaign, according to The New York Times.
“I am a business owner, my business generates revenue through legitimate practices,” he told OAN. “I spread my dividends to myself and I used my own funds that I got working to finance my campaign.”
Mr Santos initially claimed the money came from “private funds”, before making a correction, according to Spectrum News. He claimed in the OAN interview that his legal team was investigating some “unauthorized changes” made in the campaign.
“We are looking into it because we had some activities on the campaign side that were unauthorized by the campaign and that is now being investigated by my new campaign team,” he said, declining to go into further details. Internal review.
The FEC is investigating more than a dozen questionable campaign donations and misconduct, including donations from Donald Trump donor Cheng Gao. The commission claimed that Mr. Gao’s donation — $11,200 — exceeded the legal limit on campaign donations, CNBC reported.
In audio released by Talking Points Memo on Thursday, Mr. Santos made some self-aware remarks about the scope of his fraud.
In the clip, the reporter (Derek Myers) is informed that his potential position in Santos’ office will not move forward after a review of his background and, in particular, a legal case stemming from his reporting period.
The audio was reportedly recorded in Mr. Santos’ congressional office without the permission of the congressman or his staff.
“I obviously lied to him and lied to him, like I lied to everybody else,” Mr. Santos said in the clip, referring to his chief of staff, Charlie Lovett.
Mr. Santos was asked by Ms. Sinclair in her recent interview if he was truly sorry that his material had been inadvertently thrown away.
“I don’t know what it’s like to look sorry to you, Caitlin … I’ve apologized more than once,” she said.
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