Politics

Grimm and Donovan Trade Barbs Over Fundraising

Incumbent launches website highlighting Grimm’s tax fraud conviction

Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., walks to the Capitol for a vote in 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Former New York Rep. Michael Grimm feuded with Rep. Dan Donovan over their fundraising numbers and who has more support in New York's 11th District.

Grimm, who is running against Donovan for his old seat, pointed out that of the $190,000 he raised in the first quarter, $100,000 of it was from district residents of Staten Island or South Brooklyn.

Meanwhile, Donovan’s campaign “spent almost all of its Q1 haul, paying out $280,000 in just three months to a Who's Who of DC consulting shops, a myriad of pollsters and paid canvassers, and an OpenTable directory of restaurants and golf clubs,” a statement from Grimm’s campaign said.

“It should be no surprise that former Congressman Grimm outraised Desperate Dan by almost double in the district, thanks to Donovan’s consistent votes against President Trump and everything Republicans have been fighting for,” a spokesman for Grimm’s campaign said in a statement.

But the announcement doesn’t mention that Donovan raised $305,202.61 during the same period.

Donovan spokeswoman responded to Grimm’s contention by saying the challenger “has a long line of shady campaign finance dealings,” and said he is “currently under investigation by the FEC.”

“We know he doesn't like to pay his bills or his taxes, but despite that, we are proud of our 2-1 fundraising advantage over him that will help us expose his liberal record and long list of ethics scandals.,” Donovan spokeswoman Jessica Proud said.

 

Donna Fagan, a Staten Island Republican activist who supports Donovan, filed the complaint with the FEC charging that Michael Caputo, who has served as Grimm’s communications strategist, doesn’t show up in any of Donovan’s FEC filings as a paid employee, the New York Post reported.

Meanwhile, on the eve of Tax Day, Donovan’s campaign launched a “Grimm Reality” website that attacks Grimm over his past tax issues and challenged him to release his tax returns, SILive reported.

Grimm resigned from Congress after pleading guilty to tax fraud and served seven months in prison.  Donovan was subsequently elected to Congress.

Grimm responded to Donovan’s claims on the website saying he had been a more effective representative when he was in Congress and said his tax conviction was persecution by the Obama administration Justice Department.

Grimm said he would release his tax records “when Dan has his first substantive bill signed into law or starts supporting our president when it actually matter.”

The winner of the Republican primary will likely win the general election. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates New York’s 11th District as Likely Republican.

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