Republican Representative from New York, George Santos, has been accused of sexual harassment by a former aide. The aide, Derek Myers, filed a complaint with the House Ethics Committee on Friday against Santos, according to a copy of the complaint posted on social media.
The representative has denied the allegations, and lawyers for both Myers and Santos did not have any comment.
Rep. Santos has also been accused of lying on his resume, which has since kicked off a string of federal and state investigations into his financial dealings.
“It is an unfortunate series of events, but the matter will hopefully be handled by the appropriate bodies and not litigated through the news media,” said Myers in a statement.
Derek Myers is a journalist, and his bio on Twitter lists him as the editor of the Scioto Valley Guardian in Ohio. Myers worked in Representative Santos’ office in Washington, D.C., starting January 24, according to his ethics complaint. Myers’ duties included “answering phones, reading mail, corresponding, and writing to constituents, among other tasks.” He said his position was considered ‘volunteer’ until his hiring paperwork was completed.
House Ethics complaint details alleged harassment
Myers’ House Ethics, sexual harassment complaint, alleges several things against George Santos. Myers said that on January 25, the day following when he began working as a volunteer, Santos hit on him.
He said while he was in Santos’ private office, the Congressman asked him if he had a Grindr account. Grindr is a hookup app that is popular among the gay community. Myers said Santos also referred to him as “buddy” and insisted he sit with him on a small sofa.
Myers maintains that Santos put his leg on Myers’ left leg and said, “Hey buddy, we’re going to go to karaoke tonight. Would you like to go?” He noted that Santos then “proceeded to take his hand and move it down my leg into my inner thigh and proceeded to touch my groin.”
Santos then allegedly told Myers his husband was out of town that night “if you want to come over.” Derek Myers said he pushed Santos’ hand away and continued to discuss constituent correspondence.
Additionally, the complaint alleges that Myers was called into the Congressman’s office on January 30 and asked about his journalism background, including “matters that had already been disclosed in my conversations with hiring managers.”
Myers said that on February 1, he was told his job offer was canceled.
The complaint also alleges that it violates House Ethics’ for Santos’ office to have him perform work as a volunteer to “offload work from paid staff members.”
Rep. Santos denied the sexual harassment allegation. “It’s comical. Of course, I deny that claim,” Santos told CNN.