Anthony Weiner (L), a leading candidate for New York City mayor, stands with his wife Huma Abedin (C) during a press conference on July 23, 2013 in New York City. Weiner addressed news of new allegations that he engaged in lewd online conversations with a woman after he resigned from Congress for similar previous incidents. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Former congressman Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., said he would not quit his race for mayor of New York City, despite acknowledging that he continued to send women inappropriate on-line messages after a sexting scandal forced him to resign from Congress in 2011.
"I said that other texts and photos were likely to come out, and today they have," Weiner said in a hastily arranged press conference with his wife by his side. Weiner acknowledged that some of the inappropriate texts were sent after he had resigned.
"Some of these things happened before my resignation, some of them happened after," Weiner said.
"I'm sure many of my opponents would like me to drop out of the race," he said, but he refused to drop out of the race.
"Anthony has made some horrible mistakes both before he resigned from Congress and after," Weiner's wife Huma Abedin said. "I love him, I have forgiven him, I believe in him."
An online gossip site called The Dirty posted screenshots Monday of online messages between an account in the name of Anthony Weiner and that of an unidentified woman. The site said the messages were sent last August, more than a year after Weiner left Congress. Weiner discusses her potential involvement in a blog for Politico, the political news site, and talks about his cats. He also asks the woman to delete other messages they exchanged.
A second, salacious chat exchange posted by The Dirty was from an account using the name Carlos Danger, which the site, quoting the unidentified woman, says is Weiner.
Weiner stepped down from Congress in June 2011 after admitting that he had texted lewd pictures of himself to women, reversing previous denials. In May, Weiner entered the race for New York City mayor and his wife an aide to former secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is campaigning for him. The couple has an 18-month-old son.
"While some things that have been posted today are true and some are not, there is no question that what I did was wrong," Weiner said in a written statement. "This behavior is behind me. I've apologized to Huma and am grateful that she has worked through these issues with me and for her forgiveness. I want to again say that I am very sorry to anyone who was on the receiving end of these messages and the disruption that this has caused. As my wife and I have said, we are focused on moving forward."
At the press conference, Weiner refused to detail which of the messages were authentic.
George Arzt, a New York Democratic political consultant said the new revelations would make Weiner's campaign much harder, particularly with former N.Y. Governor Eliot Spitzer running for city comptroller after his own sex scandal.
"Obviously he has a lot of problems, plus the fact that I think that Spitzer has taken a lot of air out of his balloon, because they have overlapping aberrant behavior," Arzt said. "There is a cumulative impact for the public. They're willing to give anyone a second chance, and then they see the repetitive nature of his misdeeds, and they say, nah, I just can't.''