Monday, June 06, 2011
What A Weiner!
As anyone who has been following the story probably knows by now, Anthony Weiner (D-NY) has fessed up and admitted that he sent pictures of his bulging underpants and such to women who were not his wife. After initially denying sending the pictures, while strangely not denying they might be pictures of him, the liberal firebrand from Brooklyn has tarnished his credibility and possibly destroyed his career in politics.
Disappointingly, several commenters (see the excerpts below) in the Crooks & Liars article I linked to appear to be more upset with right-wing operative Andrew Breitbart, the man who released the photo and claimed to have others, than with Representative Weiner.
I believe these anonymous women (if you believe they are women) were paid handsomely for their involvement in this BREIBART set-up, otherwise ask yourself, why take it to Breibart and not the attorney General.
I believe Briebart deliberately, with malice and fore-thought, entrapped Weiner.
Breitbart is a dirt bag. Doesn't that fucktard have anything better to do with his time? I'm more embarrassed for him than Weiner.
Liberals can gripe about Breitbart all they want, but no matter how you cut and slice it, Weiner put himself in the situation he is in and the responsibility lies 100% with him.
To put things in perspective though, what Weiner did was hardly the worst thing a politician has ever done. Just about all of us have said and done things that would be tremendously embarrasing if it became a matter of public record. We're only human, and so are our elected officials. That being said, when you run for and get elected to public office, you should know that the public will hold you to a higher standard of behavior.
When you make yourself a lightning rod, as Representative Weiner did by being a brash, outspoken Democratic politician, you have to be aware that there is a well funded right wing apparatus dedicated to examining your life under a microscope and sifting through your activities with a fine toothed comb. President Clinton should have been a cautionary example in this regard. Knowing full well that conservatives were looking for anything they could find to take him down, Clinton foolishly fooled around with Monica Lewinsky, leading his impeachment. And like Weiner, Clinton initially denied what he had been accused of, only to have to come clean when damning evidence surfaced. Then again, maybe these guys just can't help themselves. Perhaps their egos delude them into thinking that they won't get caught, or if they do get caught, that they can somehow weasel their way out of it.
While Weiner is from New York, he is not my representative, as his district covers Brooklyn and Queens. I did have an exchange with him years ago during a meet the candidates event in Queens when he first ran for the office he holds today and I was sharing an apartment in Queens with my wife before we married. At the time, I was quite active in the immigration restrictionist movement (and I hope to one day write a post about how I came to be involved in the movement and why I ultimately left it) and I remember asking Weiner if he would support legislation to deny citizenship to children born to illegal immigrants. He snapped at me and made some remark about how did my parents get here or something to that effect.
I have since moved on with my life and gotten over that exchange. As my political views shifted from conservative to liberal over the years, I did admire Weiner's gutsiness and appreciated his vocal support for womens' reproductive rights. That being said, I am not going to reflexively defend him for engaging in behavior that I would condemn had it been done by a conservative politician.
As to whether he should resign, I think it depends on whether he did anything illegal. If not, then it is up to his constituents to decide come Election Day in 2012. After all, if Republican Senator David "Diaper" Vitter of Louisiana can be re-elected by the people of his state, then who am I to complain if the people of Brooklyn and Queens want to give Anthony another chance? Whether his wife will remains to be seen.
Posted by Tommykey at 10:06 PM