What happens now that GOP Rep. George Santos has been expelled from Congress?

As a former member, the New York Republican could still access the House floor.

December 1, 2023, 12:25 PM

A resolution to oust Republican Rep. George Santos passed in a bipartisan vote on Friday, meaning Santos was immediately expelled from the House of Representatives.

Looking back at the last time a member of Congress was expelled -- Ohio Democratic Rep. James Traficant back in 2002 -- Santos will immediately lose most of his privileges such as the use of Capitol facilities, the power to speak or vote on the House floor and any access to equipment or other technology provided by Congress -- such a cellphones or a personal computer.

In the aftermath of Traficant's expulsion, House officials sent him a letter informing him of the expulsion, according to reports at the time.

PHOTO: Rep. George Santos is surrounded by journalists as he leaves the U.S. Capitol after his fellow members of Congress voted to expel him from the House of Representatives on Dec. 1, 2023 in Washington, DC.
Rep. George Santos is surrounded by journalists as he leaves the U.S. Capitol after his fellow members of Congress voted to expel him from the House of Representatives on Dec. 1, 2023 in Washington, DC.
Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

Santos will likely receive a similar notification from the House Clerk directing him to clear out his belongings. The House Clerk would take over control of his office -- serving New York's 3rd Congressional District until the seat is filled after a special election.

Santos' staff -- the ones who haven't resigned -- could continue serving the district under the direction of the House Clerk until a new member is elected and sworn into office.

PHOTO: Rep. George Santos walks into the House Republican cloakroom at the Capitol, Nov.  28, 2023.
Rep. George Santos walks into the House Republican cloakroom at the Capitol, Nov. 28, 2023.
Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

But as a former member, Santos will still retain his ability to access the House floor at his own discretion -- although he has expressed uncertainty about whether he'd exercise his life-long floor privileges in the future.

"I don't know," Santos told reporters at a pen and pad briefing in his office Thursday afternoon. "Not in the near future, I don't believe."

PHOTO: Rep. George Santos faces reporters at the Capitol in Washington, on Nov. 30, 2023.
Rep. George Santos faces reporters at the Capitol in Washington, on Nov. 30, 2023.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Former members rarely take advantage of that privilege, but at times former Florida Rep. Joe Scarborough, who served three terms in the House before embarking on a career in television, pops up on the House floor during the State of the Union address.

Former Georgia Republican Rep. Jack Kingston was on the House floor earlier this month during legislative business.

David Wu would also occasionally pop up in the chamber after he resigned in disgrace in 2011.

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