At a spontaneous 4 p.m. press conference in the New York City Sheraton hotel, New York Congressman Anthony Weiner confessed to posting a lewd picture on his Twitter feed and carrying on inappropriate online relationships with half a dozen women over three years.
In a tearful admission Monday afternoon, Anthony Weiner explained that he had lied about being “hacked” on Twitter, telling a large crowd of journalists at the hotel ballroom that he was responsible for sending the inappropriate photo that launched the captivating “Weinergate” scandal. After accidentally making the photo visible to all of his followers, Weiner said he “panicked” and attempted to cover up the indiscretion by lying about its origins and deleting it.
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Additional revealing photos surfaced Monday showing a shirtless Weiner, prompting the 46-year-old congressman to come clean. He said he engaged in numerous online conversations with at least six women over the course of three years, trading photos and explicit messages with the strangers both before and during his marriage to State Department aide Huma Abedin.
Weiner, a seven-term congressman from New York City, said he took “full responsibility” for his indiscretions and spent more than half-an-hour at the podium explaining the full range of his online actions with women, whom Weiner said he’s never met. He claims, though, that his marriage is stable (“I still love her, and she loves me”) and also said that he will not resign as a result of the scandal. “I did not violate any law,” he said, explaining that he’s continued to uphold his responsibility to his Queens and Brooklyn constituents.
Though Weiner called the press conference, it was actually conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart of BigGovernment.com who took the microphone first. Breitbart is credited with drawing attention to the original Twitter photo when it was posted on his blog. After reporters noticed Breitbart entering the hotel ballroom the event, he stepped to the stage and gave his own already widely publicized opinion, reprimanding reporters and liberals for questioning his role in the scandal. Breitbart claimed to have “at least one” additional “x-rated” photo of Weiner, a fact that the congressman, when asked, didn’t dispute.
UPDATE: Weiner has stated that he will cooperate fully with an ethics investigation by the House over whether he’s broken any rules.
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