New York Republican Rep. Michael Grimm said Tuesday that he will “absolutely not” resign if asked to do so by House Speaker John Boehner in the wake of his indictment on federal fraud and other charges.
“I am discussing things with leadership, but the main point is I’m back to work,” Grimm told reporters, adding that his top priority includes the proper allocation of Hurricane Sandy recovery funding. Grimm said he resigned from his spot on the House Financial Services Committee on Monday because he “didn’t want any of this”—eyeing the crew of cameras and journalists outside his fifth floor Capitol Hill office—”to distract from what the committee has to do.”
Grimm, a 44 year-old former Marine and FBI agent, turned himself in to the FBI on Monday morning as prosecutors released a 20-count indictment alleging he committed a range of crimes, including wire and mail fraud, perjury, obstruction, hiring undocumented immigrants, and filing false tax returns. He has denied all wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty.
“My colleagues have been great, they’ve been very supportive, and I think that’s going to continue,” Grimm said.
“Listen, at the end of the day, I’m a Marine, I don’t relent, I don’t give up and I’ve never abandoned my post before and I’m not going to do it now,” he added.
Boehner said Grimm “made the right decision” in stepping down from his committee post. When asked by CNN if he would support Grimm in his upcoming reelection campaign, Boehner responded: “I think all members should be held to the highest ethical standards.”