For The Locals

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 12: Rep. George Santos (R-NY) leaves the U.S. Capitol on January 12, 2023 in Washington, DC. The Nassau County party chairman, Joseph G. Cairo Jr. and other New York Republican officials called on Santos to resign as investigations grow into his finances, campaign spending and false statements on the campaign trail. Santos announced in a tweet that he would not resign.

Look, I really don’t care what your political stance is. You can side with the left or the right all you want, so let’s put that aside right here at the very top. When you’re engaging in scummy behavior, regardless of political affiliation, you deserve to be called out because these are the people who are supposed to REPRESENT the American people. That’s why they were elected.

Take George Santos, U.S. representative for New York’s 3rd congressional district covering part of northern Nassau County on Long Island and northeast Queens. Santos has already been under scrutiny for shady behavior from a largely forged resume to fabricated Jewish heritage. But when you start taking money fraudulently from VETERANS? How can this man still be allowed to hold public office?

Santos allegedly conned a disabled, homeless veteran out of thousands of dollars donated to save the man’s dying service dog, according to a report. According to The Patch, Richard Osthoff told the sitethat he met Santos, who introduced himself as Anthony Devolder, during a tough time in his life in May 2016. Osthoff, who was honorably discharged from the Navy in 2002, was living in a tent on the side of Route 9 in Howell with his beloved service dog Sapphire at the time, The Patch reported.

Sapphire was suffering from a life-threatening stomach tumor that was growing by the day and surgery to remove the tumor would cost $3,000, according to the vet’s estimate, Osthoff said. Unable to afford the surgery, a veterinary technician offered assistance through a pet charity called Friends of Pets United run by Anthony Devolder, an alias used by George Santos in the past. Devolder set up a GoFundMe to raise funds for Sapphire and once it hit its goal of $3,000, he closed and deleted the fundraising page and became hard to reach before he disappeared altogether.

Osthoff’s account was corroborated by fellow veteran and retired New Jersey police Sgt. Michael Boll, who told The Patch that when he heard what happened, he tried to help Osthoff by reaching out to Santos. “I contacted Santos and told him, ‘You’re messing with a veteran,’ and that he needed to give back the money or use it to get Osthoff another dog,” Boll said. “He was totally uncooperative on the phone.”

Santos claimed that he instead donated the $3,000 to other dogs in need because Sapphire wasn’t a candidate for surgery and Osthoff didn’t do things his way, according to a text exchange viewed by Patch. After that, Osthoff was never able to reach Santos again. Santos denied even knowing Osthoff when asked about the veteran’s claims. “Fake,” the embattled lawmaker texted Semafor. “No clue who this is.”

Should these allegations turn out to be true, how can one have any faith or trust in people elected to office (or worse yet LEAVE them in office) with such shady tactics for personal gain?