Congressman-elect George Santos, a Republican from New York who reportedly lied about his Jewish heritage and has admitted he fabricated key details of his resume, said in an interview Monday evening that he never claimed to be Jewish. “I said I was ‘Jew-ish,’” Santos told The New York Post.
However, in a position paper shared with Jewish and pro-Israel leaders during the campaign and obtained by the Forward, Santos called himself “a proud American Jew.”
In the two-page document that the Santos campaign shared earlier this year with pro-Israel groups, including the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), Santos also claimed to “have been to Israel numerous times from educational, business, and leisurely trips.” A brief search of his social media accounts found no images or documentation of his alleged trips to Israel.
According to genealogy websites reviewed by the Forward and reported last week, Santos falsely claimed to have Jewish grandparents who fled anti-Jewish persecution in Ukraine and then Belgium during World War II. The website MyHeritage.com lists Santos’ maternal grandparents as having both been born in Brazil before the Nazis rose to power. Santos’ mother, Fatima Alzira Caruso Horta Devolder, who died in 2016, regularly shared posts with Catholic themes and images of Jesus on her Facebook page. [Continue reading…]