At a press conference in Louisa, Virginia, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor called on the scandal-embroiled Rep. Anthony Weiner, New York Democrat, to resign his position as a U.S. Congressman.
“Congressman Weiner and his constituents will make that decision,” Cantor said during a Louisa County Chamber of Commerce luncheon. “I certainly don’t condone his activity and I think he should resign.”
The local paper also picked up on Cantor’s challenge to Weiner, but includes a further comment from Cantor:
“We’ve got a lot of serious challenges in this country and a lot of work for Congress to do,” Cantor said. “The last thing we need to do is get enmeshed in a discussion about Congressman Weiner and his Twitteractivities.”
As a member of Republican leadership, Cantor’s statement carries some heft, but as a Republican, probably not with Weiner himself. The media will highlight Cantor’s message as a further political escalation over Weiner’s activities, which it certainly is. As the House Majority Leader, the statement will have more impact than GOP chair Reince Priebus’ identical demand earlier in the day, for instance.
If Cantor is right about leaving this between Weiner and his constituents, this development in his district might mean more than statements from any Republicans:
Some of Rep. Anthony Weiner‘s constituents made it clear Tuesday they want him gone.
Maya Goldstein, 44, of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, agreed, and said the congressman’s teary TV breakdown shows he needs help.
“He should resign immediately because of his lies,” she said. “He should get some therapy… When it comes time for reelection, I’m definitely not voting for him.”
I’m still skeptical that Weiner will resign — unless his fellow Democrats get sick of hearing about him from their own constituents. If they’re calling Weiner a pervert in his own district, one can imagine what people think outside of NY-09. The big news will be if and when a prominent Democrat among leadership publicly calls for Weiner’s resignation to end the distractions and allow NY-09 constituents to have proper representation in Congress.
When will that call come, and who will make it? I’m not expecting it to ever come, frankly, but unless it’s someone like Steny Hoyer or James Clyburn making the demand — or another member of the New York City Congressional delegation — I’m betting Weiner tries to brazen his way through it.