George Santos, the divisive New York congressman with more plot twists in his biography than an M. Night Shyamalan movie, is now facing claims that he once competed as a drag queen in Brazilian beauty pageants 15 years ago. MSNBC columnist Marisa Kabas first broke the news on Wednesday afternoon following an interview with current Brazilian drag queen and former Santos acquaintance, Eula Rochard. Rochard shared a photo purportedly of Santos in drag during an event at Icaraí Beach.
NEW: I just spoke by phone with Eula Rochard, a Brazilian drag queen who was friends with George Santos when he lived near Rio. She said everyone knew him as Anthony (*never* George), or by his drag name, Kitara, and confirms this photo is from a 2008 drag show at Icaraí Beach. pic.twitter.com/1MeeDR1O2O
— Marisa Kabas (@MarisaKabas) January 18, 2023
The revelation has been confirmed by two of Santos’ acquaintances, Reuters reports, and only further reinforces the hypocrisy and lying that has become synonymous with the name George Santos—who these days is a staunch conservative and vocal proponent of a variety of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, including Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law.
Santos’ potential history enjoying the gender-bending drag lifestyle is especially surprising given his efforts to enmesh himself in a far-right community that has directly targeted, you guessed it: drag shows. Last October, Idaho conservatives began circulating a petition in support of a bill that would ban public drag shows, calling the performances sexually exploitative, adding stating that “these creeps are using our children as pawns for their perverse sexual desires.”
Although Santos says allegations that he ever lived it up by competing for beauty prizes fabulously decked-out in women’s ensembles are “categorically false,” he’s also a figure well-known for a tenuous relationship with the truth—detractors say that he is, in fact, a bafflingly brazen, unapologetic damned liar.
A sampling of the mendacious member’s lowest blows include: that his mom was in “the South Tower” of the World Trade Center during the September 11 attacks, when she was actually in Brazil; that he lost four employees in the Pulse nightclub shootings; that he owned a $1 million apartment in Brazil, and 13 real estate properties; and that he founded an animal rescue charity that, in fact, never existed.
The lying legislator also claimed to be Jewish, but later reimagined that position, explaining that he feels pretty much like a Jew, and is therefore Jew-ish. Which is quite an ish.
The most recent obsession from the media claiming that I am a drag Queen or “performed” as a drag Queen is categorically false.
The media continues to make outrageous claims about my life while I am working to deliver results.
I will not be distracted nor fazed by this.
— George Santos (@Santos4Congress) January 19, 2023
As Rochard told MSNBC’s Kabas, the Santos impulse to editorialize—read: fib amuck—is nothing new: “George always lied about everything. He used to create stories, usually involving money…”
Rochard further notes that, back in the day, there wasn’t even any “George,” telling Kabas that his pals in the Rio area knew him as “Anthony” or, more deliciously, by his drag name, “Kitana.”
As Santos is denying that he ever was Kitana, we are not likely to find out if he named his drag alter-ego after the wildly popular, beautiful-but-deadly Mortal Kombat character Princess Kitana, whose “fatality” moves include the “Kiss of Death” and “Scissor Split.”
Santos’ fictions have led to widespread condemnation and bipartisan calls for his resignation, including from six out of ten of his fellow New York Reps. in congress, but he has consistently refused to surrender.
Perhaps Santos—who did not return requests for comment—is holding onto his House seat like grim death because his career prospects are severely limited. He’d never be able to earn a buck as a drag queen, for instance.
“He did not have what it takes to be a professional,” Rochard told Kabas. “George did not have the glamour for that.”