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Weiner rejects calls to drop NYC mayoral bid

By Jennifer Peltz & Jonathan Lemire

Associated Press

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 12:54 p.m. HST, Jul 24, 2013


NEW YORK » Anthony Weiner pressed ahead with his campaign for mayor today, brushing off growing calls for him to drop out over a newly disclosed round of raunchy exchanges with a woman online.

Rivals, newspaper editorial pages and at least one former New York congressional colleague urged the Democrat to quit the race a day after he acknowledged exchanging raunchy messages and photos online even after the same sort of behavior destroyed his congressional career two years ago.

"I think he should pull out of the race. I think he needs serious psychiatric help," Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y.

Weiner brushed off such calls as he prepared to testify at a public housing hearing and participate in a candidate forum in the evening.

"I have posited this whole campaign on a bet, and that is that, at the end of the day, citizens are more interested in the challenge they face in their lives than in anything that I have done, embarrassing, in my past," he told an encampment of reporters as he left his Manhattan home in the morning.

"This is not about me" but about voters, he said, and headed for his campaign office.

The latest scandal erupted Tuesday after the gossip website The Dirty posted X-rated messages and a crotch shot it said he exchanged with a woman last year while using the online alias "Carlos Danger."

At a news conference Tuesday evening, Weiner, who has been a favorite in the polls since he launched his political comeback attempt in late May, stood side-by-side with his clearly uncomfortable wife, Huma Abedin, and said he hoped the voters would give him another chance.

Abedin, a longtime adviser to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, reaffirmed her love and support for her husband and said the matter was "between us."

Two of the city's major newspapers, The New York Times and the Daily News, said the 48-year-old Democrat had exhausted his opportunities for forgiveness with his latest indiscretions.

"The serially evasive Mr. Weiner should take his marital troubles and personal compulsions out of the public eye" and the mayoral race, the Times wrote.

The Daily News declared Weiner to be "lacking the dignity and discipline that New York deserves in a mayor," and said "his demons have no place in City Hall."

At least three of his mayoral rivals, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and former City Councilman Sal Albanese, both Democrats, and billionaire businessman John Catsimatidis, a Republican, said he should drop out.

"Anthony's presence in this race has become a never-ending sideshow that is distracting us from the debate of the serious issues of this election," de Blasio said.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and former City Comptroller Bill Thompson, Weiner's strongest rivals in the polls, criticized him but didn't directly call on him to quit.

Thompson said on WNYC-AM that Weiner should "think about the people of this city and make the right decision," while Quinn said at a news conference that it is up to Weiner and his family to decide whether he should end his run, but New Yorkers "need a mayor whose is sole focus isn't self-aggrandizement."

Weiner has emphasized that he said when launching his campaign that more messages might emerge. But until Tuesday, he never said directly that some were sent as recently as last year.

"I regret not saying explicitly when these exchanges happened," he told supporters in an email Wednesday.

But Weiner said the campaign was "too important to give up because I've had embarrassing personal things become public." And he said he wasn't surprised his opponents wanted him out.

Democratic strategists in New York and Washington, where Weiner served seven terms before resigning in 2011, said there are few external means of pressuring Weiner to drop out.

Weiner has nearly $5 million to spend on the campaign, allowing him to mount a vigorous defense on television. Also, he was not particularly close to his colleagues in the congressional delegation, the strategists said, so he might be unmoved if they urge him to exit the race.

As for the voters, some want Weiner to go.

"He's disgusting," said magazine editorial assistant Katelin Marinari, 24.

But others said they would still vote for him.

"Do I think morally he's wrong? Of course. But I'm not voting for a minister; I'm voting for a mayor of New York," said public relations worker Raven Robinson, 22.

A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday continued to place Weiner in the top rung of Democratic contenders with Quinn and Thompson, though it was taken largely before the scandal broke.

The unidentified woman involved in the newly disclosed messages told The Dirty that she was 22 when she began chatting with Weiner on a social networking site in July 2012, and that their exchanges lasted six months.

The Dirty posted explicit conversations of two people fantasizing about various sex acts, and ran a pixelated photo of what it said were Weiner's genitals.

___

Associated Press writers Jake Pearson in New York and Stephen Olemacher and Ken Thomas in Washington contributed to this report.







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SueH wrote:
Let him continue wasting his money to press on with his campaign. He'll never get elected anyway.
on July 24,2013 | 08:52AM
WooWoo wrote:
You really don't think he can get elected? Have you not heard of Marion Barry? Former Mayor of DC, got caught on VIDEO smoking crack, went to jail, and then got re-elected. Umm, yes, Weiner can get elected, and probably will.
on July 24,2013 | 10:14AM
SueH wrote:
If the people are foolish enough to re-elect him, then they get what they deserve: "stupid is, as stupid does". No wonder the government is so messed up.
on July 24,2013 | 10:36AM
EwaWarrior wrote:
It's NY, what do you xpect? They elected the carpetbagger Hilary Clinton to the senate!
on July 24,2013 | 10:53AM
false wrote:
You have to consider the type of constituents. Marion Barry got re-elected because of the makeup of the DC voters. Same as why O.J. was acquitted by the jurors. This is not the case for NYC, Wiener can't win now.
on July 24,2013 | 10:58AM
lee1957 wrote:
Got caught smoking crack, with a prostitute no less.
on July 24,2013 | 11:30AM
2disgusted2 wrote:
Yup! People have no values! we let Clinton off the hook and he set the WORST example.. and this from me a Progressive Democrat! and now there is all this stuff about Chelsea not being his daughter coming out in anticipation I guess of Hillary's election!
on July 24,2013 | 11:41AM
tiki886 wrote:
He has $2 million to waste which is not his money because it is what was left over in his campaign fund before he resigned in disgrace from the US House of Representatives.

You'd think his wife Huma would have convinced him to save his campaign funds to transfer to Hillary's bid for President in 2016.

So I guess he's just using his campaign funds to buy a patronage job in local government from a local politician or a local corporation.


on July 24,2013 | 09:29AM
Sunny wrote:
Weiiner has serious problems and is also in denial....
on July 24,2013 | 09:30AM
2disgusted2 wrote:
and so are some Uh administrators and EWC development officers who are hooked on sexting! Maybe the EWC needs to look into how they hire!
on July 24,2013 | 11:43AM
phyllum69 wrote:
If he gets elected, New York deserves what they get. Ewwwwwwwwwwww.
on July 24,2013 | 09:44AM
loquaciousone wrote:
We all know by now that Weiner is a weeny but what's with wrong with his wife?
on July 24,2013 | 10:06AM
inverse wrote:
One conclusion is the wife is a hanger on, that thinks honor, love, devotion and commitment are useless and overrated and just wants her sicko husband to get elected to higher office so she can attain power and wealth through the husband. Like H and Bill Clinton it is NOT a marriage of love, rather one of convenience.
on July 24,2013 | 11:24AM
loquaciousone wrote:
Is that why she works for Hilary?
on July 24,2013 | 01:04PM
inverse wrote:
Yes, she learned from the master. People talking about H Clinton for president? What a joke. While she was Sec of State, the Benghazi massacre and coverup is still going on AND her federal Agent Deedy from the State dept is on trial of murder of Elderts, etc. Bush 2 was really bad with the bogus 2nd war in Iraq (B S story by Colin Powell about mobile chemical weapons factory by an Iraqi defector who was named "curveball") and now Obama has swung the country in a polar opposite where bailouts have failed, Obamacare will RAISE costs and taxes for all Americans, not just the super rich, the Middle East is in turmoil and cannot look to the US to stabilize things, which means terrorism against the US and Americans will RISE, etc. The US is swinging way to much to the extreme right and left and needs some stabilization and moderation big time.
on July 24,2013 | 03:48PM
residenttaxpayer wrote:
It's rather strange that his wife is standing by him....most other wives would have split in a heart beat.....
on July 24,2013 | 10:42AM
tiki886 wrote:
Hey, Hillary didn't do anything about Bill! As a matter of fact, she probably was in charge of his bimbo eruption suppression efforts to protect Bill's job and political prospects. Hillary knew what was going on with Bill just as Huma knew what was going on with her husband's weeny.
on July 24,2013 | 10:48AM
tiki886 wrote:
If you didn't know, Huma works for Hillary and is her closest aide and confidant. Both women are flawed because they want to protect the political prospects of their husbands rather than leave the cheats and perverts that Bill and Weiner are. Both Huma and Hillary are flawed individuals as well for staying with their perverted husbands.
on July 24,2013 | 10:55AM
bpet wrote:
Unfortunately, he will probably win .. . .his 'mistakes' are getting a little tired . .and he is a 'little pervert' . . .badly in need of counselling and being disallowed from using electronic communication devices. His wife probably needs some hep too.
on July 24,2013 | 11:04AM
2disgusted2 wrote:
God the guy has guts and NO SHAME! And his wife?
on July 24,2013 | 11:40AM
tutulois wrote:
He should give up his grab for power, and let mommy restrict his internet access. What a transparent liar !
on July 24,2013 | 06:36PM
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