Originally Published: 17 MAY 23 13:05 ET
By Clare Foran, Kristin Wilson, Lauren Fox and Haley Talbot, CNN
(CNN) — The House is expected to take up a resolution to expel embattled GOP Rep. George Santos Wednesday evening, but Republicans appear on track to avoid a politically painful up-or-down vote on the resolution.
California Democratic Rep. Robert Garcia introduced a privileged resolution this week to expel Santos from Congress. When the resolution comes up for floor consideration, Republicans are expected to make a motion to refer it to the House Ethics Committee, triggering a vote on whether to send the resolution to the panel instead of a vote directly on the expulsion measure itself.
That would give Republicans an opportunity to sidestep having to go on record on the question of whether Santos should be expelled.
A vote to expel Santos would be politically perilous for House Republicans. Republicans control only a narrow majority and cannot afford to lose more than a handful of votes to pass legislation. The party also wants to hold onto Santos’ seat, a key New York swing district.
At the same time, Democrats would seize on the votes of any GOP lawmaker who voted against expulsion and seek to tie them directly to Santos.