Social Question

ETpro's avatar

Does it help that we now have a cleaner Weiner?

Asked by ETpro (34552points) June 6th, 2011

Congressman Anthony Weiner, D. New York; held a press conference today and came clean about the errant Twitter post. It was not the work of a hacker, but a keyboard error on his part. He had meant to email it to the woman at the center of the controversy, but inadvertently posted it on Twitter instead. He erased it himself as soon as he realized his error, but it was too late. And yes, it was a picture he had taken of himself. Further, this incident isn’t the limit of his online dalliances. But he swears that all the relationships were virtual only—that he never met or even intended to meet any of the individuals involved.

Does that satisfy you? What standard of behavior do you think we should hold public officials to?

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23 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

~Thought it was a Kielbasa marketing play.

iamthemob's avatar

Oh, Weiner.

I’m upset by the denial. I get it, but poor form. Apologize to the people for lying.

quiddidyquestions's avatar

Meh, he shouldn’t have lied but I think many people would have done the exact same thing. I never got the big deal with this story in the first place. Everyone was of-age, no one was hurt. It was a mountain made from a molehill.

I tend to be pretty lax with my expectations for politicians. They’re people, and people do stupid things and behave foolishly all the time. I have no tolerance for hypocritical though. If you’re pushing to outlaw abortion, for example, heaven help you if your mistress had one.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Boy, you can’t make a mistake if you’re a politician, can you? For every married rep dude flashing a shot of his weenis, we’ve got another married rep dude trolling for chicks on Craig’s List with bare-chested pictures of himself. Or a Senator cruising in the men’s room. Of trading lobbying favours for cash on D.C. park benches with fake Arab oil sheiks. Or whatever. Rock the casbah.

If we saw a woman in a similar scandal, wouldn’t that be something?

marinelife's avatar

Zero. He is a zero. I would not want him representing me in public office.

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

@aprilsimnel and @quiddidyquestions have got me wondering now.

People who become public officials, are they the type of people who like attention, sexual validation included? Should I hold them to a lower standard than people who work in relatively more private jobs?

chyna's avatar

@Imadethisupwithnoforethought No, they should be held at a higher standard. He is representing the people of his state, has represented himself as one type of person, and has shown he is another type of person after the good people of his state has voted him into office. He is cheating on his wife, if not IRL, but on the internet, and is not someone I would want to represent me or my state.

ETpro's avatar

I appreciate everyone’s opinion. This is not one I’m going to argue one way or the other. If he chooses to soldier on, it will be up to the voters of his district whether to forgive or forget him. I was rather amazed that Senator David Vitter, R. Louisiana, was able to do that. He turned up on the DC Madam’s phone list. And consorting with prostitutes is a crime, while what Rep. Weiner did is not. Finally, Vitter ran before the revelation and again after is as a religious right, family values crusader quick to condemn the iniquity of others. But the voters of Louisiana found it in their hearts to forgive him—or perhaps figured his seniority meant more pork brought home, and best keep him around for that reason.

Judi's avatar

Pisses me off. How come powerful men can’t seem to keep it in their pants? Even Clinton couldn’t compartmentalize passion. Stupid stupid stupid. How can men so smart be so stupid?

funkdaddy's avatar

It seems like it should be between he, his wife, and the intended target for the photo, if they’re all good with it, it doesn’t really affect anyone else.

Doesn’t anyone feel like they’ve seen more in public? Any crowded beach, any Mardi Gras celebration, any weekend in a club? Surely no public officials would be seen in such locations. ~

If he’s effective, passionate, and does good for those that elected him (this would be up to individual tastes I would imagine) then how he gets his satisfaction should be his business as long as he’s not hurting anyone. That goes for men, women, and their families, which really need to be respected a bit more when something like this goes down.

ETpro's avatar

@Judi They let the little head do the thinking. I’m old enough now that I’m in charge up here, and the little head doesn’t have a lot to say about that. But when I was the Congressman’s age, my little head was often the boss to. It’s HARD not to let it be. You have to walk a mile in those shoes to know the challenge. Certainly some men pass the test. Some don’t even really like sex. But for those of strong passions, it’s not easy acting sane when your hormones are in charge.

@funkdaddy True. As political sex scandals go, this one’s actually pretty tame.

augustlan's avatar

I’m glad he owned up to it, which is exactly what he should have done right away. Am I thrilled that he’s doing shit like that, as a married man? No. Do I think it has any bearing on whether or not he’s a good congressman? No. Supposedly, JFK was a big-time cheater… he was also one of our most beloved presidents.

marinelife's avatar

@augustlan But Weiner is a big-time liar.

iamthemob's avatar

@marinelife – I think that’s a faily low bar for big-time.

marinelife's avatar

@iamthemob Who knows what else he has lied about? All that we know is that he lied repeatedly and publicly. He even made up stories accusing someone else.

iamthemob's avatar

@marinelife – Most of what was said was equivocation. Now, of course, it appears that he knew or was reasonably sure of what was going on…so it was a lie coming from him.

But really – 6 days of that and the truth comes out…that’s enough time to gather your camps, talk to your family, settle some affairs, and then come out with the truth. I’ll say that when you’re hit with a surprise like that, having done something stupid, but that seems to have no real bearing on your ability to legislate…it’s a very human reaction.

Perhaps I have low expectation for people…that may be because I know too many of them.

Judi's avatar

I have to admit, that I would like to look for reasons to not be pissed since I agree with him politically, but if I’m going to say, “ah ha! I knew you were all a bunch of hypocrites,” when republicans get caught up in a dirty sex scandal, then I would be a hypocrite myself if I wasn’t just as disgusted when a democrat acted like an idiot. I expect Democrats to be smarter than that.

iamthemob's avatar

@Judi – Being biased just means you’re a person. Admitting it and trying to control for it is what makes you awesome. ;-)

augustlan's avatar

I forgave Clinton for lying in his situation, I don’t see why I shouldn’t do the same for this guy. When publicly confronted about something you’ve done that will be so hurtful to your family, I think it’s a pretty normal human reaction to lie, at least at first. I’m not saying I condone the actions, or the lying, just saying I can understand why he’d lie about it (initially).

Now, if he’d been accepting bribes and lying about that, I’d find that incompatible with his continued ability to hold office. This thing he did has nothing to do with his job, though.

augustlan's avatar

@Judi But, as a Democrat, he’s probably not out there talking about the sanctity of marriage/family values, blah blah blah. So, is he really a hypocrite? I’d say probably not. Still not a stellar human being, but not a hypocrite.

ETpro's avatar

@augustlan I agree that it is terribly hypocritical of Republicans like Senator David Vitter, Senator John Ensign and Gov. Mark Sanford to run as Family Values champions, and defenders of all that’s moral and wholesome—even publicly criticizing those who fall from grace in scathing terms, only to be caught with their own trousers down around their ankles. Sanford misused public funds to fly down to see his mistress. He later repaid them—after getting caught. Vitter consorted with prostitutes. That’s not only a moral breach, it’s against the law. Ensign was schtupping a staffer and wife of his best friend; and he arranged secret bribes and an illegal lobbying slot to try to cover it all up. And when Clinton got caught, all three of these moral paragons were quick to pounce, demanding he resign or be impeached.

All that makes Rep. Weiner look like a choir boy.

But Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats promised a new era of ethical, responsible and transparent government when they retook control of Congress; and this certainly doesn’t live up to that. I think that’s why Ms. Pelosi was quick to refer the matter to the Ethics Committee for investigation, and I salute her for doing so.

augustlan's avatar

I was really glad to see that Pelosi did that, too. If he used money, or travel, or whatever we pay for in pursuit of this crap, I will judge that much more harshly.

filmfann's avatar

I heard on the radio that Nancy Pelosi was very deeply disappointed with Weiner. Then I heard she was unhappy, because this Weiner just won’t quit.
I am not sure if these statements are in conflict, or if I just missed a news story.

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