House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and a political action committee dedicated to putting Congress back under Democratic control are calling for Congressman Michael Grimm to resign.
Mr. Grimm, a Staten Island Republican, plead guilty today to a tax evasion charge and said outside court today he would not resign.
“Now that the election is over, Congressman Grimm is finally admitting the truth to his constituents,” Ms. Pelosi said in a statement this morning. “Clearly, Speaker Boehner must insist that Congressman Grimm resign immediately.”
House Speaker John Boehner has not commented yet on whether his fellow Republican should step aside. But the House Majority PAC is circulating an online petition demanding Mr. Grimm step aside.
“Friend: A little more than one month after getting re-elected to Congress, Michael Grimm agreed to plead guilty to felony charges. He’s unfit to represent New York in Congress,” the email reads. “That’s why we need your help before you head home for the Holidays. We need to send a message to Speaker Boehner that it’s time to force Michael Grimm to resign his seat in Congress. But we can’t do that alone. We need your help.”
Though state lawmakers must automatically give up their seats if found guilty of a crime, members of Congress legally can remain in office. It will be up to the House to vote to expel him, which observers say is a possibility if Mr. Boehner, known to have little tolerance for poor ethics, can’t pressure Mr. Grimm to step down.
Mr. Grimm faced a 20-count indictment in April but easily won re-election this fall against Democrat Domenic Recchia Jr.