Would Someone Explain Why Anthony Weiner's Mistakes Are Worse than Anyone Else's?

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I don't get it. Really, I don't.  When Anthony Weiner was in Congress he did some pretty

Anthony Weiner, NYC, May 2011

stupid stuff.  I don't know how anyone can believe that anything they do online -- and my rule remains, don't put anything on your Facebook page that you wouldn't want your mother to see -- will be viewed by a limited number of people.  Or that you can control who sees it.  Tweets are a lot like pee in water, once it gets in there, it's impossible to remove all of it.  So there was nothing smart about what he did but why all the anger from Democrats?  Chris Matthews seems to relish bashing the former Congressman  on a daily basis and Governor Andrew Cuomo said it would be "a shame" if Weiner wins.  (Read that here.) What's up with that?

Personally, I like Anthony Weiner.  He was a solid voice for the left who never shied away from fighting for what he believes in.  I like that in a politician.  Compromise is not a dirty word but it often feels like progressives are quick to do it while people on the other side of the aisle are more willing to dig their heals in so having someone like Weiner fighting for things I care about was (and is) refreshing.  Back when this scandal broke I wrote a piece calling on him to stay in the House of Representatives (you can read that here).  His resignation seemed to have more to do with his brash style than anything he tweeted.  More affable members of the House and Senate have done a lot worse and kept their jobs because they had people to defend them, Weiner didn't.

Mark Sandford cheated on his wife and used state funds to fly off to Argentina to be with his mistress and he was just reelected to Congress.  The only reason Senator David Vitter was not prosecuted for frequenting prostitutes was the statute of limitations had run out and he kept his day job (apparently it's only wrong when Acorn is involved).  And we all know what happened when my personal hero, President Bill Clinton, strayed.  We forgave him.  So why are we so reluctant to do the same for Anthony Weiner?

I have read that people understand adultery more than the need to tweet your privates to random people.  I would be lying if I said I understand the latter all that well and I love twitter but that's just me.  When I worked for Hillary Clinton I worked with Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin and have a lot of respect for her.  The only people who really have a right to be upset with Weiner are the people who were directly hurt by what he did.  I am not one of those people but Huma is and she seems to have forgiven him.

We have a lot of real problems facing the country.  New York City needs a strong mayor. I don't know if Anthony Weiner is the right man for that job but disqualifying him because of some stupid tweets and texts he sent years ago is just as stupid.

Oh, and I have not lived in NYC for a while but with a new Marist poll showing Weiner is gaining ground on City Council Speaker Christine Quinn -- he's gone from trailing her by nine points to trailing by five, but it has to sting to be her.  Missing the first mayoral debate last night may be a move she lives to regret.

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