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George Santos’ campaign paid $85,000 to the embattled New York Republican this year, filing shows

<i>Drew Angerer/Getty Images</i><br/>Rep. George Santos’ campaign paid $85
Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Rep. George Santos’ campaign paid $85

By Fredreka Schouten, CNN

(CNN) — Rep. George Santos’ campaign paid $85,000 to the New York Republican in May, using donor money for a loan repayment, according to a Friday filing with federal election regulators.

That payment marked the campaign’s single largest expense during the second quarter of the year, the report to the Federal Election Commission shows.

Santos, indicted in May on 13 counts of federal fraud and money laundering charges, has announced his reelection but appeared to spend virtually no money on traditional campaigning during the second quarter. The loan repayment accounted for roughly $8 out of every $10 spent by the Santos campaign during the three-month period.

The repayment is tied to more than $700,000 in loans that Santos previously reported making to his campaign ahead of his successful 2022 bid for Congress. But Santos, who has fabricated parts of his resume, education and family history, has faced questions about how he acquired the money to make those loans in the first place.

After reporting a net loss in the first quarter of the year, Santos’ campaign initially reported Friday that it took in more than $133,000 from donors during the April-to-June fundraising period and started July with more than $55,000 remaining in the bank.

But his campaign filed an amended report Friday night that revised those numbers upwards, saying it has collected $162,000 during the quarter and had more than $81,000 remaining in the bank.

It also corrected the amount of outstanding money the campaign said it still owes to the lawmaker: $630,000.

Many of Santos’ donors contributed the maximum amount allowed for the primary, $3,300, although some were described as students, unemployed or, in one case, working as a part-time cashier.

Santos, who has had several campaign treasurers during his brief tenure in office, has a pattern of revising his campaign filings. His office and campaign treasurer did not immediately respond to inquiries about the report.

Multiple candidates have lined up to run against Santos in a swing district that takes in parts of Queens and Long Island, and two have announced totals that exceed Santos’ haul. One of them, Republican Kellen Curry, previously announced raising more than $200,000 during the second quarter between his campaign and an affiliated political action committee. Democrat Zak Malamed, another challenger, announced taking in $417,000.

Candidates must file reports disclosing their fundraising and spending by Saturday.

This story has been updated with additional information.

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