WASHINGTON — Embattled New York Rep. Michael Grimm will resign his seat in Congress following his guilty plea for felony tax evasion, a House leadership aide confirmed to NBC News on Monday. Last week, the Staten Island Republican pleaded guilty to a single count of felony tax evasion after he allegedly failed to accurately report payroll and earnings of a restaurant he owned before being elected to Congress.
In a statement late Monday night, Grimm said, "The events which led to this day did not break my spirit, nor the will of the voters. However, I do not believe that I can continue to be 100 percent effective in the next Congress."
On Tuesday, House Speaker John Boehner said that Grimm made "the honorable decision" in resigning.
"I know it was made with the best interests of his constituents and the institution in mind, and I appreciate his years of service in the House," Boehner said.
Grimm was comfortably re-elected to his third term in Congress in November despite the pending charges. But he vowed during an October debate: "Certainly, if I was not able to serve, then of course I would step aside and there would be a special election." Grimm also grabbed headlines last January when he was caught on camera following the State of the Union threatening to throw a reporter off a balcony and break him "like a boy" after being asked about campaign-finance misconduct allegations. Grimm said his resignation will be effective Jan. 5.