6:32 pm Feb. 16, 2012
Staten Island Republicans are rallying around Representative Michael Grimm, literally, planning an event this Saturday at county G.O.P. headquarters which his colleagues will testify to his character and effectiveness as a congressman. That's according to former congressman and borough president Guy Molinari.
This morning, Grimm was for a second time the focus of an investigative story on the front page of the New York Times. This one highlighted some questionable business dealings, two weeks after the paper published a story that accused Grimm of accepting illegal campaign contributions, including bags of cash.
"So far they're all bullshit," said Guy Molinari, the former congressman, whose support helped Grimm defeat an incumbent Democrat, Mike McMahon, in 2010.
"We're going to have a rally on Saturday," Molinari told me this afternoon. "And that rally is going to be loaded with people who are going to be there to support Michael Grimm. I will be one of those speaking, and I will probably be the one who is going to talk in harshest tones.
"This is our expression of love and support. Michael's a star and, in one year, his record is unbelievable. We're very proud of him and he's done a lot of good work for our city and our country. He's on fire and the Democrats see him as a threat to them in the future."
Molinari said the rally would feature a number of county chairmen and elected officials, but declined to offer any names, since it was still in the planning stages.
The public rally follows a private meeting Molinari hosted at his home for about a dozen of Grimm's closest supporters earlier this week.
"He went into great detail about all these issues," Molinari said. "And he said, 'I want you all to realize that I've done nothing nothing nothing illegal, nothing near it. And I want you to ask me questions and I'll answer them for you.'
"It was really remarkable, it was just a folksy kind of thing. And we were all there to say Michael, we're with you, we believe you."
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