N.Y. Congressman To Reporter: ‘I’ll Break You In Half’

New York Rep. Michael Grimm physically threatens a reporter in a post-State of the Union interview with NY1.
Posted at 8:40 AM, Jan 29, 2014

If you hadn’t heard the name Michael Grimm before Tuesday night’s State of the Union address, chances are you have by now. 

“It is another blow for embattled Congressman Michael Grimm.” (Via WNBC

"Congressman Michael Grimm caught on tape." (Via CNN

"Republican Congressman from New York Michael Grimm threatens a reporter live on air."

Here’s how it went down. (Via Fox News

​GRIMM: "I'm not speaking about anything that's off topic. This is only about the president."

SOTTO: "Well, what about..."

GRIMM: "Thank you." (VIa NY1

New York 1's post-State of the Union interview with New York Congressman Michael Grimm should have ended there. But the cameras kept rolling.

GRIMM: "No, no, you're not man enough, you're not man enough. I'll break you in half. Like a boy." (VIa NY1) ​

In case you couldn’t quite make out what Grimm was saying, according to a transcript released by New York 1, Grimm threatened to throw the reporter over the balcony and to break him in half.

Shortly after, NY1’s political director released a statement, saying:

"It is extremely disturbing when anyone threatens one of our reporters – let alone a U.S. Congressman. The NY1 family is certainly alarmed and disappointed by the behavior of Representative Grimm and demands a full apology from him.”

But if it’s an apology the station was after, it didn't get one. Here’s what Grimm had to say in a statement released to Politico, which read in part: “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 ... 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.”

As The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza put it: “Oh, Michael Grimm. This is not the right response. Like, at all.” (Via Twitter / @TheFix)

Talking Points Memo’s Hunter Walker offers one explanation — noting, Grimm’s longtime communication director quit about three weeks ago. (Via Twitter / @hunterw)

Now in case you’re wondering what started this whole thing. The reporter was trying to ask Grimm about alleged campaign finance violations involving one of his donors. The Congressman himself is under federal investigation though he has not been charged with any wrongdoing.