Gotham Gazette

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Citizens Union


US Congress: NY-11



Congressman Mike Grimm


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Michael Grimm (R, I, C)

Domenic Recchia (D, WF)

Hank Bardel (G)


Grimm (R, I, C)

Congressman Mike Grimm

Michael Grimm (R, I, C)

Campaign Website
Twitter - Campaign
Twitter - Congress

On the Issues

Record in Office

Currently: United States Representative for New York's 11th Congressional District (2010-present)

Previous Work: United States Marine; FBI Special Agent; Principal, Bio-fuel Company; Founder, Small Health Food Restaurant.

Education: Graduated, Federal Police Officer Training Program, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center;  J.D., New York School of Law, 2002;  B.B.A., Accountancy, Baruch College, CUNY 1994.

On the Issues


"...tax and spend policies put forth by President Obama have failed. From the healthcare law to unachievable EPA standards... regulations coming out of the Obama Administration are hurting the small businesses of Staten Island and Brooklyn and keeping them from growing and creating jobs."

"...businesses are hit even harder from outrageous tolls and local regulations that have made permit requirements, inspections and fines spiral so far out of control that it's impossible for our businesses to survive. Taxing and over-regulating our local businesses is not an impetus for job creation, and I remain committed to doing all I can to reduce this burden on a federal level"

"...we must do better to get our economy on track. In Congress, I have continuously voted for pro-jobs bills that cut red tape and create an environment for job and businesses growth.  By getting big government out of the way, this law will increase access to capital to businesses and entrepreneurs, as well as reduce the uncertainty coming out of Washington.

"...I have a strong record supporting fair and competitive wages as well as work agreements that protect our workforce."

"Finally, as a member of the House Financial Services Committee, I understand that the financial services industry is a key employer of my constituents, both directly and indirectly. That is why I continue to support policies that allow the private sector to thrive and contribute to our local economy, as well as support provisions that overturn the over-reaching policies of Dodd-Frank that are crushing our financial industry and slowing economic growth."


"I introduced the NYC Natural Gas Supply Enhancement Act which was signed into law."

"This costs nothing in taxpayer dollars, will create almost 300 local construction jobs, generate approximately $265 million in construction activity, and lower the cost of energy by bringing clean, affordable energy to the residents of New York City."

"...I have supported [legislative initiatives] to protect wildlife, promote renewable energy resources and independence, and combat carbon pollution in a fair and sensible manner."

Foreign Policy

"As the current crisis in Iraq proves all too well, the United States is losing ground to our enemies, alienating our allies, and is increasingly unable to maintain our leadership role in the world stage. This dire situation didn't happen by accident; rather it's a consequence of our president's failure to lead and to develop a comprehensive foreign policy to meet the challenges of our volatile world. We see the president reacting, time and time again, to one crisis after another, giving us a laundry list of what he's not going to do, but never what he actually plans to do. ...
Our president needs to remember that the world looks to the United States for our guidance and stability, and after countless displays of weakness and no comprehensive foreign policy, we have lost the faith of our allies and credibility with our rivals. When we fail to lead it empowers our enemies, it creates a vacuum too often filled by radicals. We failed to lead in Syria, allowing Vladimir Putin to to take the lead, and in return he decided to invade our Ukrainian allies. Now the administration is potentially looking to Iran to bail us out in Iraq, the biggest supporter of terrorism on the face of the earth. This is simply not an option, as Iran still remains one of our greatest threats. Enough is enough, the world needs us to lead.
As President Reagan said, 'We cannot shirk our responsibility as the leader of the free world, we maintain the peace through our strength.' Our president must have the strength of conviction to start proactively fostering the blessings of a free world. Those very blessings that our parents and grandparents, some who fought in WWII and some who fought in Korea, fought so valiently to secure. When I visit with my fellow veterans at the VFWs and the American Legions, I see the pain in their eyes. Whether they served with my grandpa or in Vietnam, or recently returned from Afghanistan or Iraq, they all agree that our country needs a new direction, as we are headed down the wrong track."

Israel:"...as the co-chairman of the House Republican Israel Caucus ... I have championed a number of pro-Israel measures including a strong U.S.-Israeli missile defense agreement, and have consistently opposed any proposal to reduce foreign aid and defense resources to Israel. In addition, I have worked to secure investment in the U.S.-Israel Energy Cooperation Program, an innovative opportunity for American and Israeli universities to coordinate on alternative energy production..."

"In addition, as a proud member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, I have sought to defend Israel not only from security threats, but from unjust defamation and prejudice by firmly calling for the revocation and rejection of the 'Goldstone Report'."

Homeland Security

"I believe that we must take greater strides to strengthen and secure our borders if we are to put an end to the trafficking and increase security within the United States."

"When the WMD-CST was threatened by proposed cuts, I worked to secure both authorization and funding to keep it open and operational. Located at Fort Hamilton, this team is highly-trained to respond to high-risk situations and assist the NYPD and FDNY in response efforts ... Keeping this team in Brooklyn is crucial to our safety and security."

Military and Veteran Affairs

"The first bill I introduced as a new member of Congress was the Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act, which establishes a program for veterans to address posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) through therapeutic dog training and handling – encouraging the use of shelter dogs when appropriate."

"I am working to see that it is soon signed into law, in order to establish a program at a nearby hospital, like the Brooklyn VA."

"...I was proud to cosponsor the Veteran Opportunity to Work (VOW) Act, which has since become law."

Policing and Criminal Justice

"I have fought relentlessly against cuts to law enforcement resources – successfully passing an amendment through Congress to prevent a cut to the COPS hiring program and another to preserve funding for regional information sharing activities that help law enforcement coordinate efforts."

"I ... took a stand for our first responders, successfully blocking cuts to the FIRE/SAFER grants that provide jobs, training, and equipment for our local fire departments."

Sandy Recovery

"I fought ... to secure over $50 billion in emergency funding to support our rebuilding efforts. Now I continue to monitor the funding and direct it into the hands of the homeowners and business owners in Staten Island and Brooklyn."

"When a federal policy prevented homeowners who turned down an SBA loan from qualifying for the full amount of grants, I ... got the policy changed."

"I have introduced legislation to reduce skyrocketing flood insurance rates."

"I worked to secure funding for Nichols Marina and to rebuild the ramp in time for boating season."


"I have made improving public transportation and reducing the costs a top priority."

"I have fought the economy-crushing [commercial] toll hikes hurting local residents and businesses. ..I filed an amicus brief in support of the AAA's lawsuit calling the tolls unjust and unreasonable. ...I have introduced the Commuter Protection Act, which will restore much-needed oversight to the PA to ensure that any and all tolls are just and reasonable."

"When legislation was proposed to strip $1 billion from the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) and make it ineligible for bus funding, I led a bipartisan effort to strip the language. This effort was ultimately successful, saving our busses from the Congressional chopping block."

"I have been a strong proponent of preserving adequate funding for our ferry system. The Staten Island Ferry is our only free mode of transportation.... it is imperative that we have adequate resources for maintenance, upgrades, and safety."

Record in Office

Michael Grimm currently serves as United States Representative for New York's 11th Congressional District, since 2010.

Committee and Subcommittee assignments: Committee on Capital Markets – Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises; Subcommittee on Monetary Policy and Trade: Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Caucuses: Friends of Switzerland Caucus (co-chair); House Republican Israel Caucus (co-chair); House Oceans caucus (co-chair); International Conservation Caucus; Sportsmen's Caucus.

Indictment: In April 2014, Grimm was indicted on 20 counts of fraud charges in connection with a health food establishment which he co-owned prior to serving in Congress. Some Republicans have noted that the indictment is a political move to oust the only member of Congress from NYC who is Republican, and that the timing of his indictment prevented the Republican party from putting a new candidate on the ballot. 

Recchia (D, WF)


Domenic Recchia (D, WF)

Campaign Website
Twitter - Campaign

On the Issues


Record in Office

Last Office Held: NYC Council Member from the 47th District (2002-2013)

Previous Work: Attorney; President, Community School Board 21.

Education: JD from Atlanta Law School; BA in Criminal Justice from Kent State University

On the Issues


"...[Served as Chairman of the City Council Finance Committee ... [with] responsibility to manage and negotiate the City's $70 billion dollar budget with the Speaker and the Mayor each year."

"While I've been Chair...the Council has passed 4 on-time budgets, that have paid down debt, made responsible decisions about spending, protected core services, and not raised taxes."

"We've done this all while prioritizing the needs of working families, children, and the public's safety and while promoting economic development and job creation."

"Through what has been a difficult economic climate for the country and the world...I'm also going to fight to make sure we get our fair share."

Civil Rights

"[W]hen I'm elected to Congress, I'll support equal pay for equal work."


"Today, 60% of New York college graduates owe student debt, at an average of $27,310 each. The Republicans in Congress voted for a bill to bait and switch our college grads. Instead of locking in low rates, they passed a law that would have students pay more interest the longer they have the loan.


We can't afford to burden our college students as they start their life in the work force ... . Keeping college affordable is one of my top priorities. We need to preserve today's rates, making it absolutely clear that our country stands behind those who take a chance on education."

Food Systems

Opposed federal cuts to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in the Federal Farm Bill, which was signed into law on February 7, 2013.

"As noted in the Council Member's recent op-ed for the New York Daily News, the vast majority--over 83%--of SNAP recipients are the most vulnerable children, seniors, and the disabled. This House Farm bill would cut $20.5 billion from the program over ten years, a much steeper cut than the Senate version of the bill ($4.1 billion), which passed in that body last week. The Food Bank For New York City recently determined that, if the entire population of Staten Island went nine months without eating, it would still fall short of the meals cut under the House bill."


Supports "comprehensive immigration reform" and the Immigration Bill which passed the Senate in 2013: "This bill is not only imperative to the well-being of our families but it's a major step in keeping our fragile economy from stagnating or even going sliding backwards."


Stated that cuts to the federal budget included cuts to transportation and infrastructure which would have benefited Staten Island:

  • "Staten Islanders have the longest and most expensive commutes in the country and yet Michael Grimm chose to stand with the extremists in the Tea Party over the people of this district when he voted for the Grimm-Ryan Budget yesterday. The billions of dollars in cuts he voted for slash essential funding for infrastructure and transportation programs that we desperately need to support job growth, trade, and efficiency."
  • "The middle class families and businesses in this district know that every moment they spend trapped in traffic is less precious time they spend with their families and less money in their pockets. By voting to cut billions of dollars in funding for our transportation projects, Michael Grimm proved yet again how out of touch he is with the needs of Staten Islanders."


Organizations: New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council; AFL-CIO; Working Families Party; United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500; Staten Island Democratic Party; Planned Parenthood of NYC; Communications Workers of America, Local 1


Record in Office

Domenic Recchia served as NYC Council Member from the 47th District from 2002-2013.

NYC Council Committee Assignments (2009-2013): Research ongoing

Bardel (G)


Hank Bardel (G)


On the Issues



Previous Work: 


On the Issues

*Research OngoingBudget

*Research ongoing





Candidates' statements taken from their respective websites and press releases, unless otherwise noted.



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