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Special Election Called to Fill George Santos’ House Seat in New York

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul has announced a special election which will take place on February 13, 2024, to fill the House seat left vacant by former U.S. Representative George Santos. Santos was expelled from the House of Representatives on December 1, 2024, following an ethics probe that found overwhelming evidence of law-breaking. Federal prosecutors had charged Santos with multiple counts, including wire fraud, money laundering, and theft of public funds. He pleaded not guilty and gave no indication that he would step down, but was eventually expelled from Congress. The winning candidate of the special election will temporarily fill Santos’ seat until a permanent representative is decided during the federal elections on November 5, 2024.

Santos’ expulsion comes following allegations that he had lied about much of his background and resume, and was later federally charged with conspiracy, fraud, and identity theft. The Department of Justice alleges that Santos stole the identity of campaign contributors and charged their credit cards without authorization. Santos is just the sixth person in U.S. history to be expelled from Congress.

Gov. Hochul’s decision to hold a special election comes as a response to the vacancy left by Santos, and aims to fill the House seat until the upcoming federal elections. The special election will provide New York’s Third Congressional District with a temporary representative until a permanent one is elected in November. The announcement of the special election marks the continuation of recent political turmoil and calls into question the future political landscape of the district.

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