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Anthony Weiner quits over sexting scandal, apologizes to wife. Weiner's statement

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WASHINGTON--Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) quit Congress on Thursday, apologizing to his pregnant wife, a top aide to Sec. of State Hillary Clinton before a sea of television cameras instead of just issuing a statement.

"I'm here today to again apologize for the personal mistakes I have made and the embarrassment I have caused," Weiner said. "I make this apology to my neighbors and my constituents, but I make it particularly to my wife Huma. I had hoped to be able to continue the work that the citizens of my district elected me to do -- to fight for the middle
class and those struggling to make it. Unfortunately, the distraction that I have created has made that impossible. So today I am 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, from Brooklyn, read the short statement with the apology to his wife over the sexting scandal that became public at the end of May. Weiner made things worse for himself by lying to the public and his congressional colleagues about lewd photos he sent to young women.

Weiner was heckled during his brief appearence, with at least one vulgar remark loud enough to be heard. From a heckler..."Are you more than seven inches?"

Yikes.

A moment after Weiner was done--he took no questions, Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y), the chief of the House Democratic political operation issued a statement: "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. 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."


President Obama, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and DNC chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fl.) all said Weiner should resign.

Click for Weiner's complete statement.


About 20 years ago, I stood in this very same room here at the
Council Center and asked my neighbors for their help, to take a chance
on me in electing me to the City Council. Then, some seven years
later, I asked those same people to join with people in Queens in
sending me to Congress.

There is no higher honor in a democracy than being sent by your
neighbors to represent them in the United States House of
Representatives. It is particularly humbling to represent this
district because the communities and families of the 9th Congressional
District are hardworking, they're patriotic, they're opinionated, they
are authentic.

I have never forgotten my neighbors because they represent the
same middle-class story as mine. I went to public schools my whole life. My mother was a schoolteacher for 32 years. My father went to
law school on the GI Bill. The middle-class story of New York is my
story, and I'm very proud of that.

I'm here today to again apologize for the personal mistakes I
have made and the embarrassment I have caused. I make this apology to
my neighbors and my constituents, but I make it particularly to my
wife Huma. I had hoped to be able to continue the work that the
citizens of my district elected me to do -- to fight for the middle
class and those struggling to make it. Unfortunately, the distraction
that I have created has made that impossible. So today I am
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.


To repeat, most importantly -- most importantly, so
that I can continue to heal from the damage that I have caused. I want to thank my colleagues in the House of Representatives,
Democrats and Republicans alike. They come from different places
around the country, but fundamentally we all agree. They're all
patriots, and I will miss them all.


....Thank you. I also want to express my gratitude to members of my staff. They're young people who are not paid very much.They're people that work very hard and very long hours. Ultimately, those people define the notion of service.

I want to thank, of course, the many people who have helped me --
the people who have volunteered, the people who have given me advice,
the many of my constituents who have offered me good ideas.

And of course, I want to express my gratitude to my family -- to
my mother and father, who instilled in me the values that carried me
this far; to my brother Jason; and of course, to my wife Huma, who has
stood with me through this entire difficult period and to whom I owe
so very much.

I got into politics to help give voice to the many who simply did
not have one. Now 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, the idea that leaving a family, a community, and ultimately a country is the one thing that all unites us, the one thing we're all focused on. With God's help and with hard work, we will all be successful.

Thank you and good afternoon.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 16, 2011 1:24 PM.

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