Saying that "I have made terrible mistakes and have hurt the people I care about the most," a tearful Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) just admitted lying about a lewd photo he sent to a young woman and to having "inappropriate conversations" over social media and on the phone with "six women over the last three years."
He also said he is not going to resign from office.
The congressman's statement follows the posting online today of more photos of him that were allegedly sent to women in recent weeks — including some of a shirtless Weiner. The images surfaced on the BigGovernment.com website of conservative activist Andrew Breitbart.
And, at the tabloid-style website RadarOnline.com, there's a story today about an unnamed woman who claims she recently engaged in many "sexting" exchanges with the married New York Democrat.
Those reports came on the heels of the news in late May that someone had sent a lewd photo — using Weiner's Twitter account — to a young woman in Washington state. The "crotch shot" image was of an aroused man, in underwear. Over a series of days, Weiner insisted that he had not sent the image to the college student — but also said he could not say with "certitude" that it was not him in the picture.
The photos that came to light today — in particular the shirtless pose — recalled the image that cost Rep. Chris Lee (R-NY) his job back in February. Lee resigned just hours after the photo, which the married congressman had sent to a woman who had posted an ad on Craigslist, was made public by the generally liberal website Gawker.
Weiner, 46, is a native of New York City who spent six years on the New York City Council before starting his House career in 1999.
In 2005, he launched an unsuccessful effort to become the Democratic nominee for mayor of New York, a position he had been expected to vigorously compete for in 2013 when Mayor Michael Bloomberg's third term ends. An April NY1/Marist College poll had Weiner leading — though barely - a pack of potential mayoral contenders. He has reportedly raised more than $5 million for the race.Copyright 2011 National Public Radio.