After pleading guilty to felony tax evasion last week, Republican Rep. Michael Grimm has announced that he will resign from Congress.
Grimm initially said that he would continue serving in the House, but ultimately decided to resign after speaking with House speaker John Boehner.
“The events which led to this day did not break my spirit, nor the will of the voters,” Grimm said in a statement. “However, I do not believe that I can continue to be 100% effective in the next Congress, and therefore, out of respect for the office and the people I so proudly represent, it is time for me to start the next chapter of my life.”
The Staten Island representative pleaded guilty to hiding over $1 million in wages and receipts at Healthalicious, the restaurant he owned in Manhattan before he was elected to Congress. He was reelected on November 4th, beating Domenic Recchia 55% to 42%.
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Last week, Grimm said that he would stay in Congress as long as possible. “As long as I'm able to serve, I'm going to serve,” the 44-year-old former FBI agent said. “As of right now I'm still in a capacity to serve, and that's exactly what I plan on doing.” Grimm is now facing up to 3 years in prison, and his sentencing is set for June 8th.
Speaker Boehner’s spokesman Michael Steel declined to comment on Grimm’s resignation or the conversation he had with Boehner. “We do not discuss private conservations the speaker has with members,” Steel said.
Grimm made national headlines earlier this year for threatening to throw a reporter off a balcony at the Capitol, after he was asked about allegations of improper use of campaign financing.
Michael Grimm’s resignation will be effective on Janury 5th, the day before the new Congress is sworn in.