If President Trump can count on two New Yorkers among his top Republican cheerleaders, they would have to be Carl P. Paladino and Rep. Chris Collins.
Now a pair of their top advisers ‑ Michael R. Caputo from Paladino’s camp and Christopher M. Grant from Collins’ ‑ are taking their pro-Trump activities a step further by signing on with a Staten Island insurgent backed by former White House staffer Stephen K. Bannon.
Caputo and Grant are working for Michael Grimm, the former Staten Island congressman who served time in a federal prison for felony tax fraud and who announced this week he will mount a primary challenge to current Republican Rep. Dan Donovan.
Both locals met with Grimm and Bannon at Breitbart News headquarters in Washington earlier this week as part of an effort they hope will elect more “pro-Trump Republicans” to Congress.
“He’s a leading voice against the anti-Trump Republicans,” Caputo said Thursday of Grimm, “and the fact that Dan Donovan is as anti-Trump as they get makes this a really good fit.”
Like Caputo, Grant thinks Grimm was dealt a “raw deal” by the Obama Justice Department in the same way that Trump now faces a probe into his Russia links. Grant thinks the Grimm-Donovan primary shaping up for 2018 is part of “an emerging battle between pro-Trump and anti-Trump Republicans.”
“We want to help people who will help the president,” he said.
Story topics: Political notebook