Newly obtained George Santos vulnerability report spotted red flags long before embattled Rep. was elected

Logo CBS NewsCBS News
2023-09-06 20:40:28  • 9 mins

When an outside firm hired by then-congressional hopeful George Santos in 2021 delivered a secret internal report detailing aspects of the candidate's checkered background, several of his aides found it too much to stomach. They urged Santos to drop out, and when he refused, they quit.

But even after New York voters elected Santos the following year and news reports began exposing concerning questions about his conduct, that original report was never made public, until now.

Portions of the report, published here for the first time, show that long before Santos' election, questions had surfaced about his marriage, his family's claimed link to the Holocaust, and his alleged ties to "companies that have been accused of fraud and scamming customers."

Santos' "vulnerability report" and GOP leaders' response

The so-called vulnerability report has emerged as Santos prepares to go to court to fight federal fraud charges. Such reports are often a standard step in the early stages of a campaign, when candidates are preparing for potential attacks from opponents. According to campaign finance records, on Dec. 2, 2021, the Santos campaign paid more than $16,600 to Capital Research Group, LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based firm whose services include vulnerability reports.

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