Scandal-prone freshman Congressman George Santos (R-NY) reportedly has a drag queen alter-ego and was exposed for allegedly defrauding a homeless veteran out of funds raised to save his dog’s life.
Santos’ past personas, misdeeds, and lies keep compounding since the New York congressman took office in January, and two new revelations about his behavior made headlines on Wednesday.
Two of Santos’ alias’s were exposed yesterday, Anthony Devolder, the name he used to ripoff a veteran, and “Kitara,” his drag queen alter-ego.
Substack journalist Marisa Kabas learned of Santos’ past life as a Brazilian drag queen from Eula Rochard, a “highly respected” drag performer from the Rio de Janeiro area, where the congressman lived at the time.
Santos went by Anthony, or his drag name Kitara, when she met him as a teenager who liked to hang out at her house while his mother played Bingo.
Though she said he enjoyed dressing up, Santos, who Rochard said then hung around with a crowd of liberals, “he did not have what it takes to be a professional. George did not have the glamour for that.”
When she saw Santos appear on Brazilian television recently, she dug up a photo and a video of him dressed up as Kitara from 15 years ago.
“The picture was taken in 2008 at the Pride Parade at Icaraí Beach in Niterói,” Rochard explained.
“George had disappeared for a little while, and then returned to Brazil with a lot of money, and that was about the same time when the picture was taken.”
She said even then, Santos “always lied about everything,” particularly regarding his finances.
“He used to create stories, usually involving money—like that his dad was rich. But then people wondered why his mom was a cleaning lady. There’s nothing wrong with being a cleaning lady, but if his dad was rich, then why?”
Rochard was shocked that he pursued politics, but noted that he was a “dreamer,” and obviously “figured out how to be famous was by becoming a politician.”
“Republicans deserve someone like him,” she added.
Kabas wasn’t the only one to break a story about Santos this week, disabled Navy veteran Richard Osthoff, told Patch that the New York lawmaker ripped him off in 2016.
Osthoff, who was honorably discharged in 2002, was living in a tent on the side of New Jersey highway with his beloved pitbull mix Sapphire, when she fell ill with a stomach tumor.
The surgery to save the service dog’s life would cost an eye-watering $3,000, and the local veterinarian referred Osthoff to a charity called Friends of Pets United, which was run by Santos under the alias Anthony Devolder.
Osthoff said that Santos set up a GoFundMe to raise the money for Sapphire’s surgery, but once the goal was reached “and then some,” the Long Island lawmaker, who has claimed he is “not a criminal,” took off with the funds.
NJ Veterans Network founder, retired police Sgt. Michael Boll, tried to mediate between the GOP congressman and Osthoff, after Santos said that the tumor was inoperable and the funds had been transferred into Friends of Pets United’s coffers.
“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 recalled.
“He was totally uncooperative on the phone.”
When Osthoff argued that his dog was going to die without the surgery, Santos told him it was the charity’s “credibility” that allowed the funds to be raised in the first place.
“We are audited like every 501c3 and we are with the highest standards of integrity,” Santos claimed in a text message.
When allegations of Santos’ tangled web of lies and financial scams came to light after he was elected into Congress, the New York Times exposed that Friends of Pets United had never been a registered nonprofit.
Boll recognized Santos as Devolder in December, when he admitted to lying about his past education, job history, and ethnicity.
“I really felt bad for Rich,” Boll commented. “He has PTSD, and this dog is his lifeline. When I first heard about it, I thought, this is going to kill him.”
Osthoff has since survived, but ultimately Sapphire had to be put down in early 2017.
“To everyone who helped me and Sapphire raise the money for her surgery, I’m sorry to say that we were scammed by Anthony Devolder and Friends of Pets United FOPU,” he wrote in November 2016 Facebook post.
“Through a series of bad veterinary contacts, and subterfuge regarding payment, Sapphire has not received veterinary care.”
He said that the tumor had nearly quadrupled in size and the dog had months to live in the post.
He had her euthanized in January to keep her from suffering, after panhandling to raise the associated fees.
“It was one of the most degrading things I ever had to do,” Osthoff remarked.
“Little girl never left my side in 10 years,” he continued. “I went through two bouts of seriously considering suicide, but thinking about leaving her without me saved my life.”