A year and a half after leaving office in disgrace, former Congressman Anthony Weiner has admitted he is mulling a possible run for mayor of New York City. In a lengthy interview with The New York Times, Weiner said, “It’s now or maybe never for me, in terms of running for something. I’m trying to gauge not only what’s right and what feels comfortable right this second, but I’m also thinking, How will I feel in a year or two years or five years? Is this the time that I should be doing it? And then there’s the other side of the coin, which is…am I still the same person who I thought would make a good mayor?”
“Also,” he added,“I want to ask people to give me a second chance. I do want to have that conversation with people whom I let down and with people who put their faith in me and who wanted to support me. I think to some degree I do want to say to them, ‘Give me another chance.’”
As for whether or not he stands a chance of winning, the Brooklyn-born Democrat said, “I don’t know. It won’t be something as pedestrian as ‘Do I think I’ll win?’ It will be something more like ‘Does it feel like I should be involved in this debate? Someone should be out there saying A, B or C.’ ”
The New York Post reported last month that Weiner spent $106,500 on two polls, apparently to test the possibility of staging what would be a stunning political comeback.
“When you spend $50,000 on a poll, that’s the real thing,” said one political insider said at the time. “You’re getting everything you can find out from voters. This guy spent a hundred grand.”
With $4.3 million in his campaign war chest, Weiner, 48, would lose public matching funds of $1.5 million should he decline to run.
On May 27, 2011, Weiner sent a link to a sexually suggestive photograph of himself via his public Twitter account to an adult woman who was following him on Twitter. After several days of denying he had posted the image, Weiner held a press conference at which he admitted he had “exchanged messages and photos of an explicit nature with about six women over the last three years.” He apologized for his earlier denials. After an explicit photo was leaked through the Twitter account of a listener of “The Opie & Anthony Show,” Weiner announced on June 16, 2011 that he would resign from Congress and he formally resigned on June 21. In the special election held on September 13, 2011, to replace him, Republican businessman Bob Turner defeated the Democratic candidate, state assemblyman David Weprin,to fill Weiner’s seat.
Prior to the scandal, Weiner was viewed as a frontrunner in the mayor’s race, having finished second in the 2005 Democratic primary to Fernando Ferrer.
Weiner is married to Huma Abedin, 36, a longtime personal aide to Hillary Clinton. They have a 16-month-old son named Jordan.