Who would replace George Santos? Contenders already lining up as calls to resign grow louder

Democrats and Republicans are already working to find a replacement for Rep. George Santos (R-NY), although he continues to resist calls from his own party to step down.

Even though he insists he won’t, Santos could resign at any time as more lies are exposed and the calls grow louder, and if he does step down that would set up a special election, and if he doesn’t there’s only about a year until the next cycle, which could potentially set up a rematch with his 2022 Democratic rival Robert Zimmerman, reported The Daily Beast.

“My only focus is building a strong bipartisan coalition to remove George Santos from office,” Zimmerman told The Daily Beast when asked about his 2024 plans.

Nassau County executive Jon Kaiman, who finished second to Zimmerman in the 2022 Democratic primary, has already said he’s interested in running again and so has progressive organizer Melanie D’Arrigo, and state assemblyman Daniel Rosenthal has been mentioned as possibility, although he doesn’t currently live in the district.

Tom Suozzi, who previously held the seat now occupied by Santos before running for governor last year, is another possibility, but Republicans are less clear about who might potentially replace the embattled congressman.

“The Daily Beast reached out to a number of Republican names being floated, including state Sen. Jack Martins, former Assemblyman Mike LiPetri and current Assemblyman Mike Durso, to no response,” the website reported. “Other names like Nassau County Comptroller Elaine Phillips and Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman have been thrown around, too, though Blakeman told City & State New York he had zero interest in the gig.”

Although some state and local Republicans have called on Santos to resign, it’s possible the national GOP doesn’t mind him sticking around or even running again, despite lying about his background.

After all, House speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) rewarded him with a pair of assignments on the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, and the House Small Business Committee after he voted to back his leadership bid.