Rep. Michael Grimm, the U.S. Representative for New York's 11th congressional district, was caught on camera threatening a journalist following the State of the Union (SOTU) address on Tuesday.
Though it’s not clear in the footage aired by NY1 News what exactly Grimm said to Mike Scotto, it’s pretty clear that the Congressman threatened to physically harm the reporter.
"I'm not talking about anything that's off-topic, this is only about the President," Grimm said irritably when Scotto initially tried to approach him for an interview about an alleged campaign finance wrongdoing.
Later, probably unaware of the fact the camera was still on; Grimm returned, shoving the correspondent out of the camera frame.
The channel’s political director Bob Hardt tweeted after the incident that Grimm told the reporter "I will break you in half" and threatened to throw him over a balcony.
The New York Times released Mr. Grimm’s official statement Tuesday evening following the altercation:
“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.”