Matt Boyle hosted former Rep. Michael Grimm (R-NY) in-studio in Midtown Manhattan to discuss the circumstances of his fall from grace and his hopes for returning to office in 2018.
Grimm recounted the saga that led to his resigning his Staten Island-based U.S. House seat in early 2015 and serving seven months in prison on a felony tax fraud charge. According to Grimm, the scandal, from the start, was linked to the political rise of President Barack Obama’s second attorney general, Loretta Lynch.
Grimm cited his efforts to bring Lynch’s predecessor, Attorney General Eric Holder, to account for the Fast and Furious gun-walking scandal that left a federal agent dead.
“This was mismanagement at the highest level, and it was the highest cost with human life,” Grimm told Boyle. “So I called on Eric Holder, as a freshman, to resign, and that came back to bite me. Fast forward, out of nowhere, comes this absolutely bogus allegation into my campaign finance, that I didn’t raise the money properly and that I violated the law. I was never worried about it because, you know, listen, I’m a former agent; I don’t take bags of cash or any of that nonsense.”
“Two-and-a-half years they investigated every aspect of my life … under the auspices that it was about campaign finance,” Grimm said as he and Boyle discussed how both the Justice Department and the Federal Election Commission closed their investigations without bringing any charges.
Then, as Grimm related, “about 14 months before the indictment, I was told … that they made a deal with Loretta Lynch that if she could take me down on anything – didn’t matter what it was – if she could find anything, she would be put to the top of the short list for attorney general. Two months after my bogus sham indictment, she’s the attorney general of the United States. It’s not an accident; this is how Washington works when it’s corrupt. It’s the definition of corruption in politics.”
Grimm characterized the crime for which he eventually pleaded guilty – tax fraud – as having dishwashers and delivery boys “off-the-books” at a New York City restaurant he ran from 2007-2009. While admitting what he did was “absolutely wrong,” Grimm pointed to a lack of a “guest worker program” for his decision to do so, asking rhetorically, “Millennials don’t even wash their own dishes. You think they’re gonna take a job washing dishes in a restaurant? Doesn’t happen.”
“I was absolutely wrong to do that, no question about it. I don’t hide from that,” Grimm went on. “But in the entire history of New York City, it’s been a civil fine. The Department of Labor gives civil fines every day to restaurants and other business that have no-skilled workers off-the-books, right? Not in my case. I was the first person, the first restaurant owner in the entire history of New York City to ever be criminally charged and not given a civil fine.”
Breitbart News reported at the time on the curious nature of Grimm’s indictment.
In Grimm’s view, the only motivation was political. “When this was first happening, I said to a lot of people, ‘I’m being targeted because they want me out of office; this is the political witch hunt.’ … As soon as she became the attorney general, … she proved that she was a political puppet for the Democrat Party. … It’s obvious that Hillary Clinton’s email crimes, even laid out by James Comey, was more than enough to open a grand jury that [Lynch] wouldn’t do. And there’s a lot of FBI agents that are so upset that they could not do their job and fully investigate and that was because of one reason: Loretta Lynch would not allow them to do their job,” he said.
Last week, Grimm announced his campaign for his old seat against establishment incumbent Rep. Dan Donovan (R-NY).
LISTEN TO MICHAEL GRIMM ON BREITBART NEWS SATURDAY: