WASHINGTON (AP) — Besieged Republican Rep. George Santos arrives on the House floor most days to deliver short speeches — celebrating women-owned small businesses, a special high school in his district or raising concern about various countries in crises.
At other times he can be seen dashing through the halls of the U.S. Capitol as lawmakers do, from one meeting to the next. He once passed out doughnuts to the press corps staking out his office.
Far from being chastened by the widespread criticism, mockery and rejection that Santos has received after having admitted to fabricating many aspects of his life story, the newly elected congressman is breezily carrying on in Congress. He is refusing calls for his resignation all while rewriting the narrative in real time.
For Santos, it’s an unusual up-is-down approach that would have been almost unthinkable in an earlier generation but one that signals the new norms taking hold amid the deepening of a post-truth era in Congress.
“I was elected by the people to come here to represent them, and I do that every day,” Santos told The Associated Press in a brief interview off the House floor.
“It’s a hard job. If I said it was easy, I’d be lying to you — and I don’t think that’s what we want, right?”
Pressed about the idea of a post-truth era, Santos said, “I think truth still matters very much.”
Perhaps not since Donald Trump launched his presidency with exaggerated claims of the crowd size at his inauguration has an elected official arrived in Washington and sought so brazenly and defiantly to convince the public of reality different than the one before their very eyes.
Santos is coming of political age at a time of an unmooring in civic life, when a duly-sworn member of the U.S. Congress can persevere, business as usual, despite having admittedly lied to voters about his resume, experience and personal life as he ran for elected office.
While Santos faces a crush of investigations — by the House Ethics Committee and a county prosecutor in New York — as well as questions from earlier charges in Brazil, where he lived for a time, he appears unmoved by the challenges.
Just a few days ago, Santos filed paperwork to potentially seek reelection.
“It used to be that when a politician lied, and they got caught, they were ashamed — or there was some sort of accountability,” said Lee McIntyre, the author of “Post-Truth” and a research fellow at Boston University.
“What I see in the…
Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Top News: US & International Top News Stories Today | AP News…