Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY/Staten Island) felt a little tense after the State of the Union. After giving a terses statement to an NY1 reporter, he was asked about the ongoing issue of his campaign finance. He declined to discuss the matter and stormed off, then returned a moment later, apparently unaware that the camera was still rolling, and threatened to “throw [the reporter] off this [expletive deleted] balcony.” Grimm followed this with “you’re not man enough, you’re not man enough. I’ll break you in half. Like a boy.”
So, yeah, I’m glad that’s how elected officials speak to members of the press. To members of the human race, really.
It’s amazing that an elected official, in the course of doing his job, can threaten the life of a reporter, then make a non-apology, and people seem to be okay with that.
Mr. Grimm issued a statement late Tuesday evening: “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.”
I expect a certain level of not threatening to throw people off of balconies from my elected officials. I don’t know, maybe I’m crazy.