Published December 20, 2015
Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., has personally apologized to a reporter after getting in a verbal confrontation with him after Tuesday night's State of the Union address.
Michael Scotto, a reporter with NY1, was attempting to ask Grimm about a campaign finance investigation surrounding his 2010 campaign when the New York City lawmaker threatened to throw him over a balcony and “break him in half," according to press accounts.
"I was wrong. I shouldn't have allowed my emotions to get the better of me and lose my cool," Grimm said in a written statement. "I have apologized to Michael Scotto, which he graciously accepted, and will be scheduling a lunch soon. In the weeks and months ahead I'll be working hard for my constituents on issues like flood insurance that is so desperately needed in my district post Sandy."
Video of the incident quickly went viral Tuesday night. After video aired, NY1 political director Bob Hardt tweeted that Grimm specifically had threatened to throw Scotto off the balcony and onto the Capital Rotunda.
Grimm said late Tuesday that he was "extremely annoyed" at Scotto for taking "a disrespectful and cheap shot" at the end of the interview.
"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," Grimm said in a statement.
The Republican-controlled House Ethics Committee said in November that Grimm is being investigated for possible campaign finance violations by soliciting and accepting prohibited contributions, which might have resulted in false information being included in campaign finance reports.
Among the allegations is that Grimm improperly sought assistance from a foreign national, by soliciting contributions in exchange for offering to use his official position to assist the person in getting a green card, according to the committee.
Fox News' Chad Pergram contributed to this report.