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Entries in Anthony Weiner (55)

Wednesday
Aug102011

Poll: Big Surprise in Race for Weiner's Seat

Mario Tama/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A poll out Wednesday shows Democrats have an unexpected fight on their hands in next month’s special election for Anthony Weiner’s congressional seat in Brooklyn and Queens.

The Democrat, David Weprin, leads Republican Robert Turner by just six points, 48 percent to 42 percent, in the Siena Research Institute poll.

Turner ran surprisingly well against Weiner in 2010 and has been endorsed by former Democratic Mayor Ed Koch, who says Turner would be the better congressman for Israel -- no small matter given the number of Jewish voters in the district.

The surprise is, this is a race Democrats had expected to win easily. Democrats outnumber Republicans three to one in the district, and the Weprin name is well-known: he’s a state assemblyman and his father was the Assembly speaker. Weprin also has collected a string of powerhouse endorsements, including Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York’s two Democratic senators.  A loss would be a psychological blow to the Democrats nationally, already reeling from President Obama's low job approval ratings, and a recent failed attempt to try to reverse a key Republican House majority in Wisconsin.

Perhaps Weprin’s political ties -- a plus in any other year -- are a drag this time around, given the toxic political environment for so-called "establishment" candidates. Turner has gone out of his way to portray Weprin as a career politician who would be part of the problem in Washington. Weprin paints Turner as a Tea Partier. But given the Wisconsin situation -- and the results of the Tea Party-driven midterm election results in the House last November, however, that might be a weak counterpunch.

Siena Institute spokesman Steven Greenberg said, "Five weeks until Election Day, and this special election is a wide open race with both candidates trying to become more known to the voters of the district and earn their support.”

"With a low turnout expected and limited media exposure in the nation’s most expensive media market, the test of both campaigns will be to mount strong voter identification efforts and effective get-out-the vote operations.  The campaign that does a better job on those crucial tasks will likely produce a victory for their candidate."

The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 points.

The election will be held Sept. 13.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun232011

Anthony Weiner Has Left the Building

Mario Tama/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- At approximately 12:01pm Thursday -- a full week after Rep. Anthony Weiner announced his intention to step down from his congressional post -- the House Clerk finally announced Weiner’s resignation on the House floor.

A letter from New York Secretary of State Cesar A. Perales was read by the clerk:

“As New York’s Secretary of State I have received the resignation of Anthony D. Weiner as New York’s 9th Congressional District representative in the United States House of Representatives. The New York State Department of State filed a letter today. A copy of his letter of resignation is attached,” the Clerk read from the letter.

House Speaker John Boehner then announced the new whole number of the House of Representatives:

“Under clause 5D of rule 20, the chair announces to the House that in light of the resignation of the gentleman from New York, Mr. Weiner, the whole number of the House is 432,” Boehner declared.

Weiner’s office is vacant. His staff will remain employed under the supervision of the Clerk until Weiner’s successor is elected.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun222011

Special Election Will Determine Congressman Weiner's Successor

Mario Tama/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- In an attempt to put Congressman Anthony Weiner's sexting scandal quickly behind them, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is calling for a special election on Sept. 13 to find a replacement for Weiner, who officially resigned last Thursday.

The special election will he held on the same day that New York is holding its primary for statewide elections.  Local party chairmen will decide who the candidates will be, rather than holding separate primaries.

On the Democratic side, New York City Council members Eric Gioia and Melinda Katz are the expected candidates, while New York City Councilman Eric Ulrich is the likely GOP pick.

The candidate who wins shouldn't get too comfortable.  Weiner's Brooklyn-Queens district is in the process of being redrawn, meaning that his old congressional seat could disappear before the 2012 regular election.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jun202011

Anthony Weiner Submits Letter of Resignation

Andrew Burton/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Following his announcement Thursday about his plans to resign, Anthony Weiner officially submitted his letter of resignation on Monday.

Weiner, who decided to step down after admitting to engaging in inappropriate electronic relationships with several women over a three-year period, stated in the letter that he would be resigning as a member of the House of Representatives from New York’s Ninth Congressional District, effective midnight on June 21.

Weiner concluded the brief letter by saying, “It has been an honor to serve the people of Queens and Brooklyn.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Jun182011

Worse Than Weiner? Some Delinquent Lawmakers Kept Their Jobs

Andrew Burton/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Following his admission to engaging in inappropriate electronic relationships with several women, Anthony Weiner announced Thursday that he would be resigning from office.

While Weiner’s actions cost him his job, there were some politicians in the past who found themselves in hot water and managed to keep their jobs while not having to deal with calls to resign.

When Democratic Rep. William Jefferson of Louisiana was indicted on 16 federal counts in 2007, neither then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi nor Majority Leader Steny Hoyer ever explicitly called on him to step down.

Jefferson, who denied wrongdoing, served out his term despite the swirling allegations and intensive ethics investigations, and was only later tried, found guilty and sentenced to prison.

Pelosi and other party leaders also avoided public calls for the resignation of Rep. Jim Traficant of Ohio before he was expelled from Congress in 2002 after a felony conviction, or of Rep. Charles Rangel of New York, who was found guilty of 11 violations of House ethics rules and formally censured late last year.

Few political historians could recall when a sitting U.S. president so directly suggested that a member of Congress step down, as President Obama did regarding Weiner.

"Usually, presidents stay out of this stuff because it's just tradition for Congress to decide its own matters," said Princeton University political historian Julian Zelizer.

"The irony of the Weiner situation is that there have been scandals when the leadership has been much more quiet in both parties," he added.

Prominent Republicans, including House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, who had also called on Weiner to resign, have declined to make similar pronouncements following alleged transgressions of their conservative peers.

Republican Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana, who admitted ties to the so-called D.C. Madam prostitution ring and later apologized, may have actually committed a crime of soliciting a prostitute. But he remains in office.

During the months-long investigation into Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., and his alleged cover up of a sex scandal with the wife of his former top aide, there were similarly no prominent public calls for him to resign.

The Senate Ethics Committee eventually concluded that Ensign made false statements to the Federal Election Commission and violated campaign finance laws and referred the case to the Justice Department for possible criminal charges. Ensign abruptly resigned just before the findings were released

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun172011

Anthony Weiner Spotted Singing, Shopping with Pregnant Wife

Mario Tama/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Hours after Rep. Anthony Weiner announced his resignation from the House, he was spotted grocery shopping in Long Island with his pregnant wife, Huma Abedin, according to the New York Post.

Another shopper told the Post that while Weiner "sang quietly along to a '50s doo-wop song blaring from the store's speakers," and despite the shocking event in her life, Abedlin "was all smiles. She didn't look upset or anything."

Weiner resigned from the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday amid a growing sexting scandal.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun172011

Sarah Palin Calls Emails 'Benign and Boring,' Weighs In On Weiner

Jeff Fusco/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In her first television appearance since the release of 25,000 emails from her term as Alaska governor, Sarah Palin said she hopes "folks learned a lot" from the "benign and boring" messages.

"It certainly shows the priorities in what was once a respected cornerstone of our democracy, our mainstream media," she said on Fox Business Network's Freedom Watch Thursday night, talking about the coverage of the email release.

"I hope folks who read the emails learned a lot about oil and gas policy," she added. "I hope people who read the emails understood why I opposed Obama's stimulus package."

She said the correspondence detailed her work on fish and game conservation, protecting second amendment rights and ethics reform before concluding, "I hope folks learned a lot from these, I guess sort of benign and boring emails."

Palin also weighed in on Rep. Anthony Weiner's Thursday resignation from Congress, saying he made himself "impotent" by spreading lewd photos on the Internet. 

"Anthony Weiner, from henceforth after his personal indiscretions were disclosed, he was going to be rendered impotent basically in Congress and he wasn't going to be effective," she said. "So obviously [resigning] was the right thing to do. Day late dollar short, though. I think he should have resigned when all of this came to light."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun162011

Anthony Weiner Resigns from Congress

Larry Lafferty/ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Democrat Anthony Weiner resigned Thursday as U.S. representative from the 9th District of New York, saying the decision would benefit his party, constituents and wife Huma Abedin.

"I'm announcing my resignation from Congress so my colleagues can get back to work, my neighbors can choose a new representative and, most importantly, that my wife and I can continue to heal from the damage I have caused," Weiner said at a news conference made raucous by loud yells from hecklers.

"I had hoped to be able to continue the work that the citizens of my district elected me to do," he said. "Unfortunately, the distraction that I have created has made that impossible."

Weiner, 46, made the announcement at a senior center in Brooklyn, New York, where he first launched his political career nearly two decades ago. He said that despite his indiscretions, he would continue to pursue the spirit of public service that first led him to run for office.

"I'll be looking for other ways to contribute my talents to make sure that we live up to that most New York and American of ideals," he said just before concluding his remarks.

He did not take reporters' questions. His wife was not present.

Weiner's decision to leave office came 10 days after his news conference admitting he lied to his family, colleagues and constituents about risque online behavior with multiple women while married to Abedin.

While polls showed a majority of Weiner's constituents did not think he should resign, the embattled congressman had come under enormous pressure from Democratic Party leaders to step down because the swirling scandal was seen as a "distraction."

In the past week, President Obama, Democratic Party chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and other top congressional leaders have encouraged Weiner to resign.

"Today, he made the right judgment in resigning," Pelosi said in a statement. "I pray for him and his family and wish them well."

Pelosi signaled at an earlier news conference that Democrats now intend to pivot back to talking about the issues they'd rather discuss, including slamming Republicans on the budget and Medicare overhaul. Attention also shifts to who will replace Weiner.

When New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo officially announces the congressional vacancy, the state must hold a special election within 70 to 80 days, according to state law. The election, which will likely occur in early fall, will be the third in New York in less than one year triggered by the resignation of a congressman because of a sex scandal.

Weiner called House leaders Wednesday night at a White House picnic to inform them he would resign today, sources told ABC News.

Weiner, who has not been charged with or convicted of violating any laws or House ethics rules, had insisted he would remain in office despite the pressure from his colleagues. On Monday, he received a two-week temporary leave of absence from the House to receive "treatment" for an undisclosed condition at an unknown location.

Meanwhile, Weiner's wife returned from an overseas trip with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton early Wednesday morning and met with her husband in person for the first time since the sexting scandal broke. Weiner had told friends he was waiting for her return before making any decision about his political future.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun162011

Pelosi: Weiner 'Made the Right Judgment in Resigning'

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi reacted to Rep. Anthony Weiner’s announcement Thursday that he will resign from office, noting that while he “exercised poor judgment in his actions and poor judgment in his reaction to the revelations” Weiner “made the right judgment in resigning.”

“Today, with the love of his family, the confidence of his constituents and the recognition of his need for help, Congressman Weiner has announced that he will resign from Congress,” Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement. “I pray for him and his family and wish them well.”

Weiner’s Democratic colleagues in the New York congressional delegation also responded to the decision to step down, noting their disappointment in his actions, but also recalling Weiner’s strengths as a legislator and wishing him the best in the future.

“Anthony has been a strong advocate for his community and an influential legislator,” Rep. Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y., said in a statement. “Although I was deeply disappointed in his behavior, this is a sad way to end his congressional service. I know Anthony and Huma well and I know brighter days are ahead for them and their family. I wish them the best during what is surely a difficult time in their lives.”

“This is a sad day, but Anthony has made the right decision for himself, his family and the Democratic Party,” Rep. Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., noted. “He will be sorely missed by me and his constituents. I wish him the best.”

“Anthony’s decision to resign is right for him and his family, our party, and our country because we have serious work to do in Congress,” Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel, D-N.Y., said. “Last week Republican leaders introduced a bill to privatize Social Security, and the American people deserve an undistracted debate on it, Medicare, jobs, and other important issues.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun162011

Pelosi Refuses to Answer Questions About Weiner's Resignation

Bill Clark/Roll Call via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi refused to comment Thursday morning on reports that Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., will resign from office this afternoon in New York.

"We are here to talk about jobs, about protecting Medicare and to protect the middle class," Pelosi, D-Calif., said as she opened her remarks at her morning news conference. "If you are here to ask a question about Congressman Weiner I won't be answering any. I've made the statements I'm going to make. It's my understanding that later in the day he will be having a press conference and after that I will have a statement."

Nevertheless, reporters peppered Pelosi with question after question about Weiner’s highly-anticipated announcement.

"Perhaps I was unclear -- I am not going to be responding to questions about Anthony Weiner," Pelosi said. "Let's see what he decides to do today and we will go from there, but I am not going to be making any announcement for him or about him at this time."

Asked whether she would withdraw her request for the House Ethics committee to conduct an investigation into the Weiner matter, Pelosi said it was premature to discuss the situation ahead of Weiner's announcement.

"We'll have a chance to talk about this, but we're not doing it before we have a decision from Mr. Weiner, Congressman Weiner. We respectfully gave him time when his wife came home for them to talk, he’s going to make an announcement, I am not going to predicate any remarks on a decision that we haven't hear yet," Pelosi said.

As she left the press conference, Pelosi refused to address questions into the content of her phone conversation Wednesday evening while she was at the White House for a congressional picnic. Despite heavy pressure from President Obama, and the House Democratic Leadership, she also declined to answer whether she was relieved Weiner is resigning.

On Monday Pelosi amped up the volume of her call for Weiner to step down, although she admitted that she did not have the power, nor does anyone else, to force him out of office.

"None of us -- not anybody here -- has the power to force somebody out of office. That person has to decide himself as to whether he will stay or he will go," Pelosi said Monday. "I hope that with the president having spoken and some leaders in Congress speaking out that Congressman Weiner will hear this and know that it's in his best interest to leave Congress."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







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