In a scathing editorial, the New York Times is calling on former congressman and mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner to drop out of the race because of revelations about his sexting that continued for months after his resignation from congress.
When the first texts were revealed two years ago, Mr. Weiner lied about it, saying he had been the victim of hackers. Then he owned up, tearfully abandoned his office and retreated into private life. Then he was back, telling the world that therapy and his wife's forgiveness had turned him around and that he was ready to begin a new chapter. That turned out to be the mayor's race, which he entered in May. What he did not say then, and what voters did not realize until Tuesday, was that his resignation had not been the end of his sexual misconduct.
The timing here matters, as it would for any politician who violates the public's trust and then asks to have it back. Things are different now, he insists. "This behavior is behind me," he said again on Tuesday. He suggested that people should have known that his sexting was an unresolved problem well into 2012.
That's ridiculous and speaks to a familiar but repellent pattern of misleading and evasion. It's up to Mr. Weiner if he wants to keep running, to count on voters to forgive and forget and hand him the keys to City Hall. But he has already disqualified himself.
It's difficult not to feel for Ms. Abedin. The couple deserved privacy as they worked through their problems - and they had it, until they re-emerged in public life and Mr. Weiner decided he was a good fit to run New York City. Mr. Weiner and Ms. Abedin have been saying that his sexual behavior is not the public's business. Well, it isn't, until they make it our business by plunging into a political campaign.
Mr. Weiner says he is staying in the mayoral race. To those who know his arrogance and have grown tired of the tawdry saga he has dragged the city into, this is not surprising.
As JR Dunn mentioned on my radio show last night, Weiner is mentally ill. It is rare that you see such self destructive narcissism in public life, and if New Yorkers aren't convinced of this man's unworthiness for high office, they deserve whatever they get if Weiner should win.
Weiner will stay in the race as long as his far left liberal base supports him. But if that support should evaporate - and the New York Times editorial is a pretty good indication that it will - expect Weiner to exit the race and go off and hide somewhere.