Representative Michael Grimm unleashed a tirade against Councilman Domenic Recchia. According to a report in Politicker, Grimm labeled Recchia a “pathetic political hack” in response to accusations that Grimm purposefully refused to back a bill that would end the sequestration on funds allotted to victims of the 9/11 attacks because Grimm had not been invited to a press conference touting the measure.
Yesterday, we reported on the allegations that Grimm’s being snubbed was cause for his refusal to back the legislation in question. Recchia had condemned Grimm in a press release, stating that, “This is self-aggrandizing, petty politics at its worst.”
Grimm responded today with an emotionally charged five paragraph press release of his own, in which he accused Recchia of being a “complete empty suit,” and “another hypocritical, career politician…void of an original thought.” Grimm also sidestepped the accusations put forward by John Feal, president of the Fealgood Foundation, that Grimm’s accidental press conference snub was the sole reason for Grimm taking political retribution in this matter.
Instead, Grimm attempted to change the narrative by accusing Recchia of being ignorant of recent Tea Party talking points like the alleged “Benghazi cover-up” and the IRS scandal. In the end, Grimm declared that Recchia had exploited the tragedy of 9/11 for political gain, the same accusation put forward by Feal towards Grimm yesterday.
A spokeswoman for Recchia was dismissive of Grimm’s attack:
“Michael Grimm’s hyper-defensiveness on this issue is well-warranted given how out-of-touch he seems to be with the people of Staten Island and South Brooklyn,” she said. “By doubling-down on not supporting New York’s first-responders, he’s demonstrated his true colors and values. What’s more, he’s trying to have his cake and eat it too when it comes to sequestration. If he didn’t support it, then he shouldn’t have voted for it.”
Perhaps Grimm’s increasingly defensive stance is a result of the heat he is feeling in his reelection bid. According to a New York Daily News report, Grimm’s election chances were recently downgraded. Citing a “Cook Political Report,” which handicaps electoral races, Grimm’s chances of winning shifted from “Likely R” to “Lean R.”