ABC’s Jonathan Karl dropped that tidbit during this Good Morning America update on the Adventures of Carlos Danger. After declaring that some of the revelations this week were untrue but refusing to specify the falsehoods, Weiner practically dared his former correspondent to come forward, and that may be all it takes:
Karl appears to have picked up on this interview with both the source and Nic Richie, who broke the story at The Dirty on Tuesday. Richie told Politico that the young woman will speak publicly about the story very soon, perhaps as soon as today:
The young woman who is alleging that Anthony Weiner initiated a months-long, sexually explicit online relationship with her says the New York City mayoral candidate repeatedly sent her lewd messages and made lofty promises that were ultimately broken.
Nik Richie — owner of the gossip website that published graphic accounts of Weiner’s alleged online interactions with a young woman — connected a POLITICO reporter Tuesday with a person who Richie said is the woman in question. She would not identify herself, and POLITICO has not independently confirmed her identity.
Richie said in an email Wednesday that the woman is “planning on coming out to [the] public soon, my guess is tomorrow.”
She’s not too impressed with Weiner now:
“He once described himself to me as an argumentative, perpetually horny middle-aged man, and that’s completely correct,” she said.
Her mother isn’t terribly impressed, either:
Sydney Leathers, the woman identified as Anthony Weiner’s new online mistress, is a heavily tattooed, high school dropout hell-bent on becoming famous — and her mother is no fan of the mayoral candidate.
“I have nothing to say except God help New York if he gets to be mayor. You can print that,” Laura Leathers told the Daily News at her home in Allendale, Ill.
With all of this nonsense, a more self-aware person might call it a day and retire before any further damage occurs. As Karl reports, though, it’s full speed ahead for Carlos Danger, despite the boos and laughter that greeted his appearances over the last two days. Weiner has succeeded in doing something few Big Apple politicians have done in the past, though — gaining consensus in the brutally competitive New York media market. All of the major newspapers want him gone:
Anthony Weiner was under intense pressure to abandon his improbable run for mayor of New York on Wednesday as his rivals, and the city’s press, turned on him after the publication of a new, explicit self-taken picture.
Three of Weiner’s fellow mayoral candidates called for him to quit after he admitted on Tuesday that he had continued to exchange sexually charged messages with young women after leaving Congress after similar allegations in 2011. …
Democrat Bill de Blasio launched an online petition to force Weiner to leave the running. The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and the New York Daily News all agreed he should go. In a blistering editorial, the Times said Weiner “should take his marital troubles and personal compulsions out of the public eye, away from cameras, off the web and out of the race for mayor of New York City”.
A better question is why he was in it in the first place. Weiner’s major accomplishments in life were being a Chuck Schumer staffer, a disgraced Congressman, and the spouse of Hillary Clinton’s confidante. Weiner hasn’t run anything except his reputation into the ground — nor has he ever expressed any interest in executive work until he suddenly demanded that New Yorkers provide him some public redemption because he and his wife want it. Yet, in a poll taken just as the new scandal emerged, Weiner narrowly led a crowded field for the top executive post in America’s most populous city.
That tells us something about the electorate, and not just in New York City, I argue in my column today for The Fiscal Times:
At first blush, it’s tempting to shrug off the debacle of Anthony Weiner’s attempt at a political comeback as an isolated, bizarre case of political ambition combined with massive hubris. Unfortunately, while it’s getting even more bizarre than first thought, it’s not an isolated issue in American politics, nor is it a harmless diversion. It exposes a lack of seriousness in electoral politics that appears to be worsening – a trend of treating politics as just another form of entertainment. …
In a ten-year period in my own state of Minnesota, for instance, we elected a professional wrestler as governor and a comedy writer to the US Senate. South Carolina just returned Mark Sanford to Congress despite his going AWOL as governor to conduct an extramarital affair. Every cycle, the media starts speculating on which Hollywood stars will run for public office as if singing, dancing, and acting prepare them for the job rather than just the campaign and media attention. This year it was Ashley Judd, who almost decided to run against Mitch McConnell for Kentucky’s US Senate seat despite living in Tennessee. …
Detroit has a $20 billion sinkhole on its ledgers with nearly no tax base to service it, entire neighborhoods that have to be demolished, and a manufacturing base that has all but evaporated. Its workers now face severe damage to mismanaged and underfunded pensions thanks to corruption and fraud by public officials as well as the structural issues that plague other public-sector pension systems. Hundreds of thousands of residents have watched their city collapse, and now will have to pick up the pieces thanks to poor decisions made in elections – even without serial Internet trollers or Client Number 9s among the candidates.
That’s what happens when voters don’t take public service more seriously than entertainment: we end up with clowns rather than public servants. To paraphrase Broadway maestro Stephen Sondheim, New York City needs to send out the clowns in this upcoming election. And the rest of us throughout the country need to take that lesson as well.
Let’s hope we’re all learning a lesson from this.