Dear Commons Community,
The New York Times editorial board declared today that amid more sex scandal accusations, former congressman Anthony Weiner should withdraw from the race for New York mayor. The editorial commented that “the serially evasive Mr. Weiner should take his marital troubles and personal compulsions out of the public eye, away from cameras, off the Web and out of the race for mayor of New York City.”
Accusations against Weiner surfaced Tuesday from nightlife website “The Dirty.” The site claims Weiner sexted with a young woman both before and after his resignation from Congress in 2011; screenshots of their alleged online conversations were also posted.
During a press conference on Tuesday, Weiner acknowledged that some of the reports were accurate, and though his problem continued into 2012, “the behavior is behind me.” He plans to continue with his campaign.
The editorial declared Weiner’s statement “ridiculous.”
The full text of the editorial appears below.
New York Times Editorial
Mr. Weiner and the Elusive Truth!
July 24, 2013
At some point, the full story of Anthony Weiner and his sexual relationships and texting habits will finally be told. In the meantime, the serially evasive Mr. Weiner should take his marital troubles and personal compulsions out of the public eye, away from cameras, off the Web and out of the race for mayor of New York City.
Mr. Weiner, who resigned from Congress two years ago after sending lewd messages and photos of his crotch to women he had not met, was forced to revisit the issue on Tuesday, and so were we all. A Web site called The Dirty had another woman’s story, another round of sex texts, and another picture of Mr. Weiner’s penis. The startling news was that this new episode apparently took place last summer, only a few months before Mr. Weiner was to begin another run at public office. The marital trauma that Mr. Weiner and his wife, Huma Abedin, had said was behind them was not as far behind as we thought.
When the first texts were revealed two years ago, Mr. Weiner lied about it, saying he had been the victim of hackers. Then he owned up, tearfully abandoned his office and retreated into private life. Then he was back, telling the world that therapy and his wife’s forgiveness had turned him around and that he was ready to begin a new chapter. That turned out to be the mayor’s race, which he entered in May. What he did not say then, and what voters did not realize until Tuesday, was that his resignation had not been the end of his sexual misconduct.
The timing here matters, as it would for any politician who violates the public’s trust and then asks to have it back. Things are different now, he insists. “This behavior is behind me,” he said again on Tuesday. He suggested that people should have known that his sexting was an unresolved problem well into 2012.
That’s ridiculous and speaks to a familiar but repellent pattern of misleading and evasion. It’s up to Mr. Weiner if he wants to keep running, to count on voters to forgive and forget and hand him the keys to City Hall. But he has already disqualified himself.
It’s difficult not to feel for Ms. Abedin. The couple deserved privacy as they worked through their problems — and they had it, until they re-emerged in public life and Mr. Weiner decided he was a good fit to run New York City. Mr. Weiner and Ms. Abedin have been saying that his sexual behavior is not the public’s business. Well, it isn’t, until they make it our business by plunging into a political campaign.
Mr. Weiner says he is staying in the mayoral race. To those who know his arrogance and have grown tired of the tawdry saga he has dragged the city into, this is not surprising.