Rep. Alan Grayson's Seven-Minute Standoff With MSNBC Host Is Painful to Watch

Rep. Alan Grayson's Seven-Minute Standoff With MSNBC Host Is Painful to Watch

When your political opponent posts a full unedited video of your recent cables news interview to his YouTube page, it's probably an indication the interview didn't go so well. 

Rep. Patrick Murphy didn't even bother to cut an attack ad against Rep. Alan Grayson, his opponent for the Democratic nomination for Marco Rubio's soon-to-be-vacated U.S. Senate seat. He simply posted Grayson's full interview from former Miami Herald columnist Joy Reid's Saturday-morning MSNBC show.

Grayson was on to ostensibly discuss his headline-making confrontation with Senate minority leader Harry Reid earlier this week. Instead, the interview turned into a nearly seven-minute stubborn standoff. Grayson refused to directly answer the host's questions and instead accused her of spreading lies and misinformation.

But it seems Grayson may have been the one spreading most of the misinformation. 

Reid begins the segment with a rundown of Grayson's progressive credentials, the Office of Congressional Ethics findings that there's probable cause to believe he misused his office to benefit his small private hedge fund, and Grayson's confrontation with Harry Reid. 

As soon as Grayson is introduced, though, he immediately goes on the defensive. He ignores Reid's greeting and first question, and instead interjects, "Well, Joy, first you gotta start by correcting the record." 

"You just did to me exactly what Harry Reid tried to do. You smeared me," Grayson continues. 

Grayson goes on to point out that the OCE did find probable cause to believe there may have been wrongdoings, but that it is the United States House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct that is ultimately charged with further investigating these matters and handing down punishment. 

"They turned that over to the Ethics Committee," Grayson says. "The Ethics Committee decided not to form an investigative subcommittee. In every single case where the Ethics Committee decided not to form an investigative subcommittee, there was no official sanction. Ever. Ever, Joy. Ever.”

Just for clarification, that OCE has existed only since 2008 and lacks subpoena power. All of its reports are completed from either publicly available or submitted material.  The board of the OCE is made up of public servants, lawyers, academics, and retired members of the House. 

And Grayson is entirely right that not every report prepared by the OCE leads to serious reprimands. He's also right that the higher Ethics Committee didn't form an investigative subcommittee. But that doesn't mean the matter is closed. 

It's not a shock that Grayson would take this stance. That's been his defense since the report was released. 

Things began getting weird, however, when he made new claims that supposed marketing material for his hedge fund referenced in the report was completely fabricated. The material, which was uncovered by the New York Times, boasts the fund "capitilizes on markets in turmoil due to economic, political, or natural disasters." 

Grayson has previously stated that the brochure was never shown to anyone, but his claims to Reid that they were fabricated altogether are new. 

"No, Joy, there you go again. I didn't create the documents. They're not from my hedge fund," Grayson say. 

"Your name is on it. Your face is on it," Reid points out.

"Yeah, so what?" he retorts. "If you Google my name, you'll see a lot of pictures of me." 

He goes on to say the metadata of the document indicates it was created in 2016. 

Politico points out that the metadata in question is actually the date the New York Times uploaded the brochure to its site, not an indication of when the file was created. 

Grayson, however, sticks to his line that the material wasn't from his hedge fund and that Reid is merely smearing him. 

The two never got around to discussing his confrontation with Harry Reid. 

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