Un professeur de droit de l’Université St. John’s cherche à remplacer au Congrès George Santos, un représentant de Long Island meurtri par les mensonges en série, affirmant qu’il en a « juste assez ».
« Je veux rétablir l’honnêteté et l’intégrité au sein du gouvernement. Je veux rétablir la confiance dans le gouvernement », a déclaré le démocrate William Murphy, 39 ans, au Post en annonçant sa candidature au Congrès.
Murphy, qui enseigne des études juridiques à St. John’s depuis 2012, réside à Farmingdale dans le 3e district du Congrès représenté par Santos qui englobe le comté de Nassau et certaines parties du nord-est du Queens.
« Santos est une honte et doit être remplacé d’une manière ou d’une autre – que ce soit par démission, destitution ou aux urnes », a déclaré Murphy, ajoutant que le membre du Congrès pour le premier mandat « devrait démissionner car il a trahi la confiance du public ».
« La seule chose dont nous n’avons pas besoin est quelqu’un qui ne peut pas prononcer une vraie déclaration si sa vie en dépendait », a ajouté Murphy.
« Le Président de la Chambre [Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-California) didn’t have the courage to kick him out — even though doing so would keep the seat red.”
Santos, 34, admitted to lying about his education, employment and family history and has been treated as a pariah by fellow New York Republicans, most of whom have called on him to step down.
He also faces several criminal and ethics investigations for shady financial dealings, including questions about the the bankrolling of his campaign.
Worried about losing the seat in the 2024 presidential year with a heavier turnout of Democrats, the local Republican Party leadership has declared its intentions to dump Santos if he runs for a second term and support another candidate for the GOP nomination and in a primary, if need be.
Seeking the Democratic Party nomination, Murphy vowed not to serve more than three terms if elected and said he would not take outside income or actively invest or trade in the stock market.
The father of a 3-year-old boy, Connor, his wife, Megan, is pregnant with their second son.
Being a parent, as well as his concern over the current state of affairs and America’s future is what spurred him to enter politics, he said.
The popular professor’s bid to replace Santos has generated buzz at St. John’s Queens campus, thanks to a story posted in the student newspaper, The Torch.
Murphy described himself as a moderate Long Island Democrat who stays close to the center.
“I stand against racism. I also stand with law enforcement,” he said. “I believe in live and let live but not woke.”
Murphy is not afraid to question Democratic Party leadership.
For instance, he criticized President Biden’s border control policies, with waves of migrants streaming in from Mexico and stressing the shelter system in New York City.
“The Biden administration doesn’t know how to handle it. They don’t have a clear strategy on what to do with the border. They don’t have a clear strategy in place,” Murphy said.
While he said there needs to be strong border enforcement, Murphy also backs a law that provides a path to citizenship to undocumented immigrants who illegally entered the US but have been living here for years as productive residents.
He acknowledged it’s a vexing problem — especially with the polarization in Washington over immigration — and volunteered that “I don’t know what the solution is.”
Murphy dodged one of the most contentious issues in education, especially among Democrats: whether or not he backs the expansion of charter schools, supported by parents but opposed by the powerful teachers’ union.
He generally said there must be a partnership among parents and teachers to improve students’ learning.
As for other specific priorities, Murphy said he would fight to fully restore the state and local tax deduction, or SALT. The deduction was capped at $10,000 under former President Donald Trump and many Long Islanders can no longer write-off a large chunk of the high property taxes on their homes.
But Biden and the Democrats did not lift the cap when they controlled both the House of Representatives and the Senate last year.
“That is hurting families all across Long Island. It’s driving young people away from Long Island,” Murphy said.
On foreign affairs, The Post asked the House hopeful about a Gallup survey released last week that found that for the first time, more self-identified Democrats nationally are more sympathetic to Palestinians than Israel in the Mideast conflict over land.
Murphy said he stands fully behind Israel, though the goal is to help bring about peace to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
“Israel has long been one of our closest allies. Keeping that alliance is important,” he said.
He supports the Biden Administration’s and Congress’ current support for aiding Ukraine against its Russian invaders.
“Ukrainians are the freedom fighters of the 21st Century,” Murphy said.
Other Democrats mentioned at possible candidates for the Santos seat next year include former Rep. Tom Suozzi, who gave up the seat and instead ran for governor last year; 2022 Democratic Party nominee Robert Zimmerman, who lost to Santos and Zimmerman’s primary rival, Nassau County legislator Josh Lafazan, party sources said.
Nassau County Democratic Party chairman Jay Jacobs said he does not know Murphy and has yet to speak with him.
“If he reaches out, I’d be more than happy to speak to him,” Jacobs, who is also the state Democratic Party chairman, said Sunday.
Murphy said he will contact Jacobs now that he’s fully committed to running.