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GOP leaders back Santos as New York Republicans call on him to step down

Representatives Anthony D’Esposito, Nick LaLota, Nick Langworthy and Brandon Williams, all newly elected from New York, called on Wednesday for Mr. Santos to step down. Of these, only Mr. Langworthy, who is the state party chairman, is in a safe Republican neighborhood. Nassau County GOP Chairman Joseph G. Cairo Jr. also called on Mr. Santos to step down.

On Thursday, two other New York Republican freshmen, Representatives Mike Lawler and Marc Molinaro, said they, too, believe Mr. Santos should quit.

Mr. Lawler said in a statement that his newcomer colleague had “lost the trust and support of his party, his constituents and his colleagues”, adding that Mr. Santos could not fulfill his duties as a congressman.

At Wednesday’s press conference where a crowd of local Republican lawmakers demanded Mr. Santos’ resignation, Mr. Cairo said he had not spoken with Mr. McCarthy.

But, he added, he hoped House Republican leaders would “support us.”

Instead, they took a hands-off stance. Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York, the No. 4 Republican who backed Mr. Santos during his campaign, notably sided with fellow party leaders rather than her state’s congressional delegation, defending her new colleague.

“It’s going to play out,” Ms. Stefanik told CNN. “He is a duly elected member of Congress. There have been members of Congress on the Democratic side who have already been investigated. »

Representative Steve Scalise, Republican of Louisiana and Majority Leader, brushed off questions about Mr. Santos, saying it was a matter that would be settled “in-house.”

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