NY Congressman Michael Grimm Caught On Camera Threatening To Throw A Reporter Off A Balcony
GOP Rep. Michael Grimm, a US House member representing a section of Staten Island, was caught on camera last night threatening a local NY1 reporter after he was asked about allegations related to his campaign fundraising activities.
After asking a few questions about Sen. Grimm’s thoughts on the State of the Union address, the reporter, Michael Scotto, attempted to ask him a question about the investigation, which goes back to 2010. Rep. Grimm cut him off, saying he wasn’t going to go “off-topic.” Previously, Grimm has denied any wrongdoing. According to the transcript provided by NY1, the conversation went like this:
Grimm: “Let me be clear to you, you ever do that to me again I’ll throw you off this f—–g balcony.”
Scotto: “Why? I just wanted to ask you…”
Grimm: “If you ever do that to me again…”
Scotto: “Why? Why? It’s a valid question.”
Grimm: “No, no, you’re not man enough, you’re not man enough. I’ll break you in half. Like a boy.”
After the incident, Grimm released the following statement.
“I was extremely annoyed because I was doing NY1 a favor by rushing to do their interview first in lieu of several other requests. The reporter knew that I was in a hurry and was only there to comment on the State of the Union, but insisted on taking a disrespectful and cheap shot at the end of the interview, because I did not have time to speak off-topic. I verbally took the reporter to task and told him off, because I expect a certain level of professionalism and respect, especially when I go out of my way to do that reporter a favor. I doubt that I am the first Member of Congress to tell off a reporter, and I am sure I won’t be the last.”
So he expects a “certain level of professionalism and respect,” but doesn’t think he has to give it because he’s in a rush and was asked an uncomfortable question? Threatening to hurt the guy is so over the top, there really is no justification in this situation. Scotto is a political reporter, so he was doing his job.
A statement from NY1’s political director Bob Hardt called the incident “extremely disturbing” and has asked for an apology.
Do you think the reporter crossed any lines by asking the question?
Update: The Congressman has called to apologize.