Nancy Pelosi called disgraced Rep. George Santos a 'coward' for leaving the House chamber before his expulsion vote ended

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Nancy Pelosi called disgraced Rep. George Santos a 'coward' for leaving the House chamber before his expulsion vote ended
Nancy Pelosi (L), George Santos (R).Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME, Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images
  • Rep. George Santos was expelled from Congress in a historic vote on Friday.
  • Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi said he was a "coward" for leaving the House chamber before the vote ended.
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Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi called disgraced Rep. George Santos a "coward" after he left the House chamber on Friday before the end of a historic vote to expel him.

The Democratic congresswoman told reporters that the vote to expel Santos was "heartbreaking" but "necessary," The Hill reported.

"This is not a casual vote for us. It's something you take very seriously," Pelosi said, adding that Santos "should have been man about it."

"This is a very serious matter to uphold the dignity and respect the House of Representatives," she said. "He has not, and he didn't today by not even showing up and being a coward."

The Republican congressman was expelled in a 311-114-2 vote on Friday following a damning ethics report and multiple criminal charges, including wire fraud, money laundering, and theft of public funds.

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As Santos left the Capitol on Friday he told a CNN reporter that the vote set a "new dangerous precedent."

"Why would I want to stay here? To hell with this place," he said.

Santos's expulsion came after two previously unsuccessful attempts to remove him.

The former New York congressman, elected in 2022, stirred controversy after it came to light that he had fabricated significant details about his life and background.

Santos is the sixth member to ever be expelled from the House and the first without first being convicted of a federal crime or fighting for the Confederacy.

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He was first indicted in May and has pleaded not guilty to the charges. A judge has set a trial date of September 9, 2024.

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