CBS News pressed House Speaker Kevin McCarthy about Rep. George Santos' credibility, but he clashed with the reporter and sidestepped the question by talking about how 'Congress is broken'

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.  
  • House Speaker Kevin McCarthy avoided specific questions about Rep. George Santos on CBS News on Sunday.

  • "Face the Nation" host Margaret Brennan called McCarthy out on repeatedly avoiding questions on Santos.

  • McCarthy granted Santos two committee seats, despite Santos being caught in lies about his work and life history.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy side-stepped a question - and got called out for it - about the credibility of embattled Rep. George Santos, instead detailing to CBS News all the ways in which Congress is "broken."

CBS News host Margaret Brennan asked McCarthy on "Face the Nation" about his choice to grant two committee assignments to Rep. George Santos, whose web of lies has only grown since he was sworn in. Santos has been caught lying about his education, employment history, religion, relationships, and performing in drag.

"Let's have that discussion. You want to bring up Santos, and let's talk about the institution itself, because I agree wholeheartedly that Congress is broken," McCarthy replied. "And I think your listeners or viewers should understand what proxy voting was because it never took place in Congress before."

"I'm asking you about George Santos," Brennan said. "Because you could put it to a vote to try to oust him -"

"You asked me a question. I'd appreciate if you let me answer. So let's go through this because it's not one simple answer. Congress is broken based upon what has transpired in the last Congress," McCarthy said, detailing how the Capitol was closed and representatives voted by proxy, a practice which McCarthy has vocally opposed. "So what I'm trying to do is open the people's house back for the people so their voices there - so people are held accountable."


"If you got a third of your caucus to vote to oust him, you could do so," Brennan said, circling back to Santos. "You don't think you could get your Republicans to do that?"

"I wasn't finished answering the question," McCarthy said with a smile, continuing his monologue on how Congress works. "Now, what I'm trying to do is change some of these committees as well, like the Intel Committee is different than any other committee -"

"So you're just not going to answer the question I asked?" Brennan interrupted.

"Well, no, no. You don't get a question whether I answer it. You asked a question, I'm trying to get you through that," McCarthy said.

"I don't think you've said the name George Santos like once," Brennan said as the two laughed awkwardly. "I've asked you a few times. You're talking about proxy voting and everything."

McCarthy continued to push back and detail "how Congress is broken and how we're changing it," while never uttering Santos' name.

McCarthy similarly became exasperated last week when reporters asked questions about why Santos, a serial liar, had been approved for two committees while Democrats like Rep. Adam Schiff and Rep. Eric Swalwell were removed from the House Intelligence Committee after McCarthy accused them of dishonesty.

"You asked me a question. When I answer it, it's the answer to your question. You don't get to determine whether I answered your question or not, okay? In all respect," McCarthy snapped, Insider previously reported.


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