Grimm Reaper: NY Rep Suggests Reporter Tossing To Relieve Tension After State Of The Union

220px-Mike_Grimm200px-Caber_2Rep. Michael Grimm (R., Staten Island) apparently wanted to unwind after the State of the Union with a little good-old-fashioned Reporter tossing from the Capitol Rotunda. A traditional form of exercise, RT (as it is called) is highly aerobic and involves throwing an adult reporter from a stationary position with no more than three paces before the launch. This is much more difficult than tossing the caber in Scottish game because the journalists tend to be odd sized and flexible. They are the second least aerodynamic of profession (after Sumo wrestlers). There is also the problem of congressional ethics rules and criminal assault concerns. However, if Grimm looked in ill-humor, it was nothing like the mood of voters.

Grimm had given an interview to NY1 political reporter Michael Scotto where he called the President’s speech “divisive.” Scotto however was going to end the interview with a question about an ongoing federal investigation into his 2010 campaign fundraising. The Justice Department has charged 47-year-old Diana Durand with using straw donors to exceed the maximum allowable contribution to Grimm’s campaign committee. Frankly it is not a huge amount and I am not sure why Grimm could not handle the question. She allegedly offered to reimburse four friends if they contributed to the campaign because she has maxed out on individual contributions.

Grimm’s reaction was . . . well . . . grim:

After the end of the segment, the camera continues to run and Grimm returns for this exchange:

“What?” Scotto responded. “I just wanted to ask you…”

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…”

[[cross talk]]

Grimm: “If you ever do that to me again…”

Scotto: “Why? Why? It’s a valid question.”

[[cross talk]]

Grimm: “No, no, you’re not man enough, you’re not man enough. I’ll break you in half. Like a boy.”

Grimm released a statement following the incident.

“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.”

Frankly, despite the slightly menacing approach, I do not believe that this was an actual threat that would be the basis for any criminal charge. However, there is the question of House ethics rules. The very first rule of the House is that members mush “Conduct themselves at all times in a manner that reflects creditably on the
House.” Threatening to throw reporters from great heights is probably not in accordance with the spirit of that rule.

On the speech itself, I watched it with my kids. I do not think much of State of the Union addresses which are increasingly well-orchestrated photo ops with little true content. As in the past, I was most struck by how out of touch all of these politicians seems, including the President. Democrats had almost Stepford Wife faces of glee and adoration at the President. Republicans carefully managed their applauding so not to appear too supportive or too oppositional. However, that chamber left the appearance of hundreds of people secure in some highly ornate political bunker — entirely unconnected to the anger and disgust of most voters. The day of the speech, the result of a new major poll showed that over half of Americans disapprove of the president’s job performance. Likewise, nearly six in 10 say they are uncertain, worried or pessimistic about what he will do with the remainder of his presidency. Congress showed the same dismal approval rates. Yet, there they were. Smiling and ecstatic in a communal celebration of the monopoly power exercised by their two parties on this country. It was truly otherworldly.

40 thoughts on “Grimm Reaper: NY Rep Suggests Reporter Tossing To Relieve Tension After State Of The Union

  1. Republican machismo on display. Ought to do wonders for their image. BTW JT why would you subject your kids to that propaganda? Time better spent doing something important like watching “Building Wild” or reruns of “Hogan’s Heroes.”

  2. Bob:

    “Michael Grimm and Richard Sherman. Compare and contrast. Begin.”

    ***********************

    Contrast: “Thuggish” congressman. “Staged” football player.
    Compare: Narcissists both.

    How’s that?

  3. I also watched the speech, and while I disagreed with some of Obama’s proposals, to say it was devoid of content is not quite accurate. I also watched the GOP response, and THAT was truly devoid of content consisting mainly of empty platitudes and no specifics, unlike Obama. I applauded his proposals for capping tuition repayment at 10% of income, his proposal to reform the tax code to make it more fair, and to reward companies that bring in or start new plants. I don’t have the time to go into all of his proposals, but I did not agree with his vague statement on immigration reform since I prefer the reform proposed by the late great liberal Barbara Jordan and her commission on immigration reform. To be sure, the SOTU speeches are wish lists especially since Democrats only control the Senate and the GOP has proven itself incapable or unwilling to govern and do the simple things to keep government running.

    I am quite thankful for the great things that Obama did for me in my life. He is the second President to actually have a major effect on me since LBJ and Vietnam. I MUCH prefer Obama to LBJ in that regard.

  4. Reprehensible Grimm from Duh Island was selected by CREW to be on their “most corrupt” list for 2011 and 2012:

    Federal investigators are probing whether a crooked fundraiser helped Rep. Michael Grimm raise illegal funds in 2010 in exchange for the candidate’s promise to help him obtain a green card.

    The New York Republican enlisted a well-connected Israeli citizen, Ofer Biton, during his 2010 campaign. Mr. Biton allegedly helped then-candidate Grimm solicit large sums from donors, including several businessmen involved in the pornography industry, frequently breaking campaign contribution limits in the process, all in the hope that — once in office — Rep. Grimm would help him procure a green card.

    Rep. Grimm also violated House rules by including footage from floor proceedings in a fundraising e-mail to promote his reelection campaign.

    (Most Corrupt Pols).

  5. Now there is a thug! Republicans have a habit of being agressive toward anyone who dare not give the high level of fawn respect they require.

  6. “Grimm”, indeed:

    “Williams escorted Grimm away. Williams recalled, “He said to me, ‘Thanks a lot man, he don’t know who he’s fucking with.’ Then he said something frightening. ‘I’ll fuckin’ make him disappear where nobody will find him.’ ” (Grimm calls this allegation “insane.”)” -from the following article

    “The Mark”

    “The F.B.I. needs informants, but what happens when they go too far?”

    by Evan Ratliff May 2, 2011

    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/05/02/110502fa_fact_ratliff?currentPage=all&utm_source=tny&utm_campaign=generalsocial&utm_medium=twitter

    Excerpt:

    “On July 10, 1999, Williams said, he was working off duty at Caribbean Tropics. Shortly after midnight, Michael Grimm walked in with a woman of Caribbean descent. The woman’s estranged husband, who is also of Caribbean descent, was at the club and confronted Grimm. The two men began to argue. Williams escorted Grimm away. Williams recalled, “He said to me, ‘Thanks a lot man, he don’t know who he’s fucking with.’ Then he said something frightening. ‘I’ll fuckin’ make him disappear where nobody will find him.’ ” (Grimm calls this allegation “insane.”) After that, Williams said, Grimm and the woman left, as did the husband.

    Around 2:30 A.M., there was a commotion on the dance floor. According to Williams, somebody was shouting, “He’s got a gun!” Following a crowd into the club’s garage, Williams discovered that Grimm and the husband had returned, and Grimm was holding a weapon. Grimm was “carrying on like a madman,” Williams said. “He’s screaming, ‘I’m gonna fuckin’ kill him.’ So I said to him, ‘Who are you?’ He put the gun back in his waist and said, ‘I’m a fucking F.B.I. agent, ain’t nobody gonna threaten me.’ ” (Grimm said he only moved his gun from an ankle holster to his waistband.) The bouncer at the front door told Williams that, when he patted Grimm down and found his gun, Grimm had showed his F.B.I. identification. The bouncer then let him pass through the club’s metal detector.

    Grimm left the club, but at 4 A.M., just before the club closed, he returned again, according to Williams, this time with another F.B.I. agent and a group of N.Y.P.D. officers. Grimm had told the police that he had been assaulted by the estranged husband and his friends. Williams said that Grimm took command of the scene, and refused to let the remaining patrons and employees leave. “Everybody get up against the fucking wall,” Williams recalled him saying. “The F.B.I. is in control.” Then Grimm, who apparently wanted to find the man with whom he’d had the original altercation, said something that Williams said he’ll never forget: “All the white people get out of here.”

    Nirmilla Jitta, a retired N.Y.P.D. officer who was at Caribbean Tropics that night, confirmed that Grimm “left and then he came back.” Grimm, she said, “forced everyone to stay in the club, saying that he was an F.B.I. agent. He was using his authority when he shouldn’t have been.” An employee of the club who was working that night remembers Grimm telling the white people to leave. Grimm “was really aggressive and really violent. You know, you put on a badge and you really think you are above everybody else,” the employee, who is white and who was allowed to depart, said.

    No one was arrested, but later that morning Williams was informed that he was being investigated for “interfering with an F.B.I. investigation.” Grimm had told the N.Y.P.D. that Williams refused to help him. After Williams provided his account, the D.A.’s office declined to press charges. But Williams was suspended for moonlighting without department approval. Grimm “should have been arrested,” Williams told me. “People that night were petrified.” He’d filed the lawsuit against Grimm for slander because, “when the N.Y.P.D. and the F.B.I. have a fight, the N.Y.P.D. loses.” The U.S. Attorney’s office successfully filed a motion to shift the case to federal court, claiming that Grimm had been “acting within the scope of his employment.” It then moved to dismiss the suit. Williams chose not to reply, and the suit was dismissed. In 2003, he retired from the N.Y.P.D.

    Recently, in his Washington office, Grimm told me that he’d been jumped by his date’s husband and four other men that night. He said that he approached Williams, who had refused to call 911. Grimm said that he then went outside, found a patrol car, and reëntered with the police. Although weapons were not permitted in the club, Grimm said that he’d been carrying his gun the whole night, and had flashed it only when pulling out his badge. As for threatening to kill people, he said, “That’s not my personality. I don’t need to speak that way. A guy with a gun who knows how to use it doesn’t need to say anything.” He denied that he had forced everyone to stay or declared an F.B.I. operation, saying that the N.Y.P.D. had been in charge. He suggested that witnesses may have confused him with the other F.B.I. agent. The police report, he said, would show that he was assaulted and acted with “incredible restraint.” Later, he sent an e-mail adding that the Department of Justice Office of Professional Responsibility had cleared him in an investigation. (I repeatedly asked the N.Y.P.D. about the incident, and attempted to obtain the police report under New York’s freedom-of-information laws, but by mid-April the N.Y.P.D. had turned over no files about the incident; this winter, the Justice Department denied a freedom-of-information request for files concerning Grimm.) “I was a hundred per cent by the book and fully exonerated,” Grimm said.”

  7. “Grimm”, indeed:

    “Williams escorted Grimm away. Williams recalled, “He said to me, ‘Thanks a lot man, he don’t know who he’s f*cking with.’ Then he said something frightening. ‘I’ll f*ckin’ make him disappear where nobody will find him.’ ” (Grimm calls this allegation “insane.”)” -from the following article

    “The Mark”

    “The F.B.I. needs informants, but what happens when they go too far?”

    by Evan Ratliff May 2, 2011

    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/05/02/110502fa_fact_ratliff?currentPage=all&utm_source=tny&utm_campaign=generalsocial&utm_medium=twitter

    Excerpt:

    “On July 10, 1999, Williams said, he was working off duty at Caribbean Tropics. Shortly after midnight, Michael Grimm walked in with a woman of Caribbean descent. The woman’s estranged husband, who is also of Caribbean descent, was at the club and confronted Grimm. The two men began to argue. Williams escorted Grimm away. Williams recalled, “He said to me, ‘Thanks a lot man, he don’t know who he’s f*cking with.’ Then he said something frightening. ‘I’ll f*ckin’ make him disappear where nobody will find him.’ ” (Grimm calls this allegation “insane.”) After that, Williams said, Grimm and the woman left, as did the husband.

    Around 2:30 A.M., there was a commotion on the dance floor. According to Williams, somebody was shouting, “He’s got a gun!” Following a crowd into the club’s garage, Williams discovered that Grimm and the husband had returned, and Grimm was holding a weapon. Grimm was “carrying on like a madman,” Williams said. “He’s screaming, ‘I’m gonna f*ckin’ kill him.’ So I said to him, ‘Who are you?’ He put the gun back in his waist and said, ‘I’m a f*cking F.B.I. agent, ain’t nobody gonna threaten me.’ ” (Grimm said he only moved his gun from an ankle holster to his waistband.) The bouncer at the front door told Williams that, when he patted Grimm down and found his gun, Grimm had showed his F.B.I. identification. The bouncer then let him pass through the club’s metal detector.

    Grimm left the club, but at 4 A.M., just before the club closed, he returned again, according to Williams, this time with another F.B.I. agent and a group of N.Y.P.D. officers. Grimm had told the police that he had been assaulted by the estranged husband and his friends. Williams said that Grimm took command of the scene, and refused to let the remaining patrons and employees leave. “Everybody get up against the f*cking wall,” Williams recalled him saying. “The F.B.I. is in control.” Then Grimm, who apparently wanted to find the man with whom he’d had the original altercation, said something that Williams said he’ll never forget: “All the white people get out of here.”

    Nirmilla Jitta, a retired N.Y.P.D. officer who was at Caribbean Tropics that night, confirmed that Grimm “left and then he came back.” Grimm, she said, “forced everyone to stay in the club, saying that he was an F.B.I. agent. He was using his authority when he shouldn’t have been.” An employee of the club who was working that night remembers Grimm telling the white people to leave. Grimm “was really aggressive and really violent. You know, you put on a badge and you really think you are above everybody else,” the employee, who is white and who was allowed to depart, said.

    No one was arrested, but later that morning Williams was informed that he was being investigated for “interfering with an F.B.I. investigation.” Grimm had told the N.Y.P.D. that Williams refused to help him. After Williams provided his account, the D.A.’s office declined to press charges. But Williams was suspended for moonlighting without department approval. Grimm “should have been arrested,” Williams told me. “People that night were petrified.” He’d filed the lawsuit against Grimm for slander because, “when the N.Y.P.D. and the F.B.I. have a fight, the N.Y.P.D. loses.” The U.S. Attorney’s office successfully filed a motion to shift the case to federal court, claiming that Grimm had been “acting within the scope of his employment.” It then moved to dismiss the suit. Williams chose not to reply, and the suit was dismissed. In 2003, he retired from the N.Y.P.D.

    Recently, in his Washington office, Grimm told me that he’d been jumped by his date’s husband and four other men that night. He said that he approached Williams, who had refused to call 911. Grimm said that he then went outside, found a patrol car, and reëntered with the police. Although weapons were not permitted in the club, Grimm said that he’d been carrying his gun the whole night, and had flashed it only when pulling out his badge. As for threatening to kill people, he said, “That’s not my personality. I don’t need to speak that way. A guy with a gun who knows how to use it doesn’t need to say anything.” He denied that he had forced everyone to stay or declared an F.B.I. operation, saying that the N.Y.P.D. had been in charge. He suggested that witnesses may have confused him with the other F.B.I. agent. The police report, he said, would show that he was assaulted and acted with “incredible restraint.” Later, he sent an e-mail adding that the Department of Justice Office of Professional Responsibility had cleared him in an investigation. (I repeatedly asked the N.Y.P.D. about the incident, and attempted to obtain the police report under New York’s freedom-of-information laws, but by mid-April the N.Y.P.D. had turned over no files about the incident; this winter, the Justice Department denied a freedom-of-information request for files concerning Grimm.) “I was a hundred per cent by the book and fully exonerated,” Grimm said.”

  8. Mespo…. I didn’t waste my time…. The news will tell me over and over what I need to know….. What he meant why he didn’t say that…. The reason the audience reacted the way it did….. All you need to know….

    I think Grimm has issues with people that question his authority…. I’ll break you like a little boy was probably one of the worst things a congress person could say to a news media outlet…. These are not the days of hunting trips with LBJ….

  9. Mr. Turley gives a poignant analysis of how the duopoly act in this Kabuki Theatre, and then the duopoly folks here go on to prove his point. And as Mespo pointed out, Bob Yeardley, both Grimm and Sherman are narcissists, doing what narcissists do to get their way. And in their minds, THEIR way is the ONLY way.

  10. “I verbally took the reporter to task and told him off, because I expect a certain level of professionalism and respect, ” Grimm needs to take the speck out of his own eye.

  11. My count may be off by one or two, but as I recall, the 2013 SOTU address included about 40 or 41 proposals to make things better for the country.

    I did not agree with all of them, but did agree with many. if not most. Two passed. Congress passed the Violence Against Women Act, and did not default on the national debt, although the latter was up for grabs for a time.

  12. All Grimm had to do was walk away and the reporter would have looked like a jerk. If he behaves like this in public with cameras all around, it’s frightening to think about how he behaves in private.

  13. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/30/nyregion/rep-michael-grimm-threat-ny1-reporter.html?hp

    “Mr. Hardt, in a posting on NY1’s website, wrote that this was not the first time Mr. Grimm had gotten into a heated confrontation with a reporter for the station.

    “Following an interview with NY1’s Errol Louis in December of 2012, the congressman blew his top – off-camera,” Mr. Hardt wrote.

    “After the interview,” he wrote, “Grimm became red-faced and started yelling at both Louis and me, alluding to settling the issue by ‘taking it outside’ with our political anchor – acting as if he were in a bar instead of a TV studio.””

    —-

    “NY1 ItCH: A Grimm Tale of Disunion in Washington”

    http://www.ny1.com/content/politics/ny1_political_itch/202681/ny1-itch–a-grimm-tale-of-disunion-in-washington

  14. US Rep. Michael Grimm (R., Staten Island) is a lowbrow troglodyte and a disgrace to the people he claims to be representing in NY’s 11th congressional district.

  15. From the DCCC:

    http://dccc.org/pages/TheGrimmFiles_FEC

    “CAMPAIGN FINANCE INVESTIGATION SUMMARY:

    According to a bombshell report from the New York Times, Congressman Michael Grimm, together with a man under FBI investigation for embezzlement, raised more than $500,000 dollars in tainted campaign cash by taking contributions in excess of federal limits, taking contributions from foreign nationals, setting up “straw donors,” and personally receiving envelopes filled with cash.”

  16. Michael Grimm’s bullying sickness: Who’s the real “thug” here?
    A trash-talking football player gets more hatred than an ethically challenged Republican who threatens violence
    JOAN WALSH
    1/29/14
    http://www.salon.com/2014/01/29/michael_grimm’s_bullying_sickness_whos_the_real_thug_here/

    Excerpt:
    Because he verbally, not physically, roughed up San Francisco 49er Michael Crabtree after the NFC championship game 10 days ago, Sherman was globally denounced as a “thug” and worse, as ugly racial stereotypes and flat-out projection defined the talented scholar from tough Compton by way of Stanford University as a criminal. Stand Grimm and Sherman side by side, there is only one “thug,” and it’s the GOP congressman.

    It’s hard not to compare the video of Grimm’s macho menace with the YouTube-immortalized serial bullying of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. That’s not entirely fair, since Grimm represents Brooklyn and Staten Island, not Jersey. But as someone who was born in Brooklyn and spent my childhood on Long Island, I recognize this brand of Northeastern Republican – the blue-state bully who trades on the Democratic Party’s cultural association with women and minorities, and competes with a macho swagger. Swept into office in the Tea Party wave of 2010, the New York Times describes Grimm as “an avid weight lifter who earned the nickname Mikey Suits for his often flashy style.”…

    Apart from charges of campaign finance and business wrongdoing, Grimm has been criticized for overall boorish behavior. In September Brooklyn magazine reported that he spent the Friday before the government shutdown boozing at a Bay Ridge bar where he got attention for getting handsy with his female companion before the two disappeared into a bathroom stall for an extended period. ”I was surprised someone so sleazy could be a congressman,” one witness told the magazine.

    In an earlier bar altercation in 1999, Grimm scuffled with a fellow patron, threatened him with a gun, then told police he’d been assaulted. When he returned to the bar with cops to search for the Caribbean man with whom he’d scuffled, he reportedly said, “All the white people get out of here.”

  17. The reference to your not man enough remark from Grimm was to the reporter a hate remark, because the reporter is openly gay….Of course the MSM will not report on that ………….

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