George Santos admits 500k personal loan to campaign wasn’t ‘personal’

Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

George Santos promised reporters a surprise on Tuesday. When he brought coffee and donuts for journalists watching his office, it was a disappointment. But Santos apparently had another surprise.

Late Tuesday afternoon, Santos’ political operation filed a batch of amended campaign finance reports, telling the feds, among other things, that a $500,000 loan he gave his campaign did not actually come from his personal funds, as he previously stated.

However, the newly amended filing told us where the funds are no comes from, it also raised a new question – where I did money comes from?

While both the old and new campaign filings claimed the loans came “from the candidate,” the latest amended campaign filing checked the box for “candidate’s personal funds”; in today’s newly amended submission this box is not checked.

Another amended filing Tuesday revealed that a “$125,000 loan from the candidate” in late October also did not come from his “personal funds,” but like the $500,000 question, it did not say where the money came from, when it was due the loan, or which entity, if any, backed the money.

The real reason McCarthy put Santos on the Science Committee

New York Times reported earlier this month that Operation Santos solicited large political donations through an organization that was never registered with the Federal Election Commission. That entity appears to share a name — RedStone Strategies — with a private company The Daily Beast previously reported to be linked to Santos.

According to timesone donor cut a check for a $25,000 contribution to RedStone Strategies in late October just days before Santos loaned his campaign $125,000 — money he now tells the FEC came from the candidate but not from his personal funds.

“The person who requested the donor said he had been asked by Mr. Santos in the weeks leading up to the campaign to contact donors, some of whom had already given the maximum allowed to Mr. Santos’ campaign, and to help coordinate their donations to RedStone, according to a person familiar with the arrangement, who spoke on condition of anonymity, ”the times reported.

Brendan Fischer, deputy executive director of government watchdog Documented and a campaign finance expert, first raised questions about the source of Santos’ $705,000 “self-funded” campaign bankroll in a Daily Beast report last month.

George Santos’ massive campaign loans may not be legal

Santos previously admitted he used money from his company, Devolder Organization LLC, to fund his campaign — a move legal experts say could amount to an illegal corporate contribution of $705,000. Santos confirmed to The Daily Beast last month that he withdrew money from his company specifically to underwrite his campaign, citing that he was the sole owner of the company. (However, the LLC is not a “sole proprietorship” and its accounts are separate from Santos’ personal accounts.)

Santos made the same claim in an interview with WABC radio, saying the loans were “the money I paid myself through the Devolder organization.” (Santos’ most recent financial disclosure shows a salary of $750,000 from the Devolder Organization, along with dividends estimated at between $1 million and $5 million.)

Fisher said today that the attempted correction was “not a half measure — it’s hardly even a quarter measure.”

“I don’t know what they think they’re doing,” Fischer told The Daily Beast after reviewing the documents. “The Santos campaign may have unchecked the ‘candidate’s personal funds’ box, but it still reports that $500,000 came from Santos himself. If the “loan from the applicant” did not in fact come from the applicant, then Santos must come clean and reveal where the money really came from. Santos cannot tick off a box and make his legal problems go away.”

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