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Wednesday
Jun082011

Rep. Weiner Standing His Ground Amidst Calls to Resign

Alex Wong/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Pressure is mounting on Rep. Anthony Weiner to step down after his confession that he had been sending lewd photos of himself and texts to women via Twitter -- and that he has lied about it.

The New York Democrat is finding few who are willing to publicly come to his defense, even in his own party.

"Lying is unforgivable.  Lying publicly about something like this is unforgivable and he should resign," former Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine, D-Va., told CBS on Tuesday.

"I know Congressman Weiner.  And I wish there was some way I could defend him -- but I can't," Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., said.  Reid added that if Weiner called him for advice, he'd tell him to "call someone else."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's call for an ethics committee investigation is not satisfying some Republicans who are calling for an immediate resignation.

Weiner, however, maintains that he will hang onto his job as U.S. Representative for New York's 9th congressional district.

"I am not resigning," a defiant Weiner said told reporters in Queens, New York Tuesday evening.

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus became the first official to call on Weiner to resign after Weiner's mea culpa press conference on Monday.

"Congressman Weiner's actions and deception are unacceptable and he should resign.  We do not need an investigation to know he lied and acted inappropriately, we need a resignation," Priebus said in a written statement.

"Either Leader Pelosi and DNC Chair Wasserman Schultz believe members of Congress are held to a different set of standards or they believe these actions demand his resignation," he added.

Although Weiner's actions would be considered by many to be lewd and inappropriate, the major question for the ethics committee is whether he broke the rules of the House of Representatives.

Blake Chisam, former staff director of the ethics committee, says that if Weiner used his government computer to send the messages, he could be in trouble, even though some incidental personal use is permitted.

"You know the rules in the House can often be a labyrinth," Chisam told ABC News, adding that the questions of whether sending pornography or lewd photographs will be difficult to argue as "incidental."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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