*This exchange that jumped off following President Obama’s State of the Union speech last night has gotten as much attention, if not more, than the actual address.
NY1 reporter Michael Scotto finished asking Republican Congressman Michael Grimm of New York about the president’s speech, then, tried to ask about allegations concerning his ongoing campaign finance scandal.
Well, Grimm went off.
After refusing to answer “off topic” questions, the Staten Island legislator ended the interview and stormed off, leaving Scotto to wrap by telling viewers that Grimm refused to address the campaign finance allegations.
Scotto threw it back to the studio, but the camera was still rolling – capturing Grimm getting in the reporter’s face and threatening to break him in half and toss him over the Capitol balcony, where the interview was taking place.
Grimm has no regrets over the exchange. In fact, he doubled down on his actions in the following statement released this morning:
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.
Scotto did the morning show rounds today to discuss the experience. Here’s his appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”