The admission by New York Representative Anthony Weiner that it was he who sent the photo of himself, and not some anonymous person who “hacked” into his Twitter account, will no doubt have reverberations throughout the political landscape, not to mention profound consequences for Weiner himself. Even if he manages to survive the ethics committee investigation that Nancy Pelosi has called for, his reputation has been so badly tarnished he might never fully recover. Assuming he wins reelection, and that is a big if, he will be but a shell of his once mighty self. And from a purely political – and, yes, selfish – stance, that will be the ultimate tragedy here.
And the saddest thing of all is that Weiner could’ve avoided all this had he just come clean when the story broke and admitted he did it. The half-assed explanations he came up with never went over. Nobody was buying it. Even close friend Jon Stewart was having difficultly (you’ll pardon the pun) swallowing the story. Expecting that all he had to do was say he was the victim of a prank and that this would go away was not only arrogant, it was downright stupid; especially given the political climate we live in today. The days of Camelot are well behind us. Every reporter knew full well about the affairs that Jack Kennedy was having. All turned a blind eye to them. That was then, this is now. Politicians who fall are almost certain to be exposed (again, pardon the pun) sooner or later. In the end Weiner left himself no choice but to fess up, unfortunately a dollar short and a week late.
If he had simply come right out and said, “It was me, I did it. It was stupid and childish and I am deeply sorry for the pain my actions have caused,” he would’ve caught some flack over it. But by waiting eight days to state what was becoming painfully obvious to an awful lot of people, he has not only made himself look like an ass, he has put his very career in jeopardy; a career that was as promising as any in Washington.
The moral of this story should be painfully apparent. When you screw up and get confronted, don’t (again the pun) dick around. Just admit it, and move on. Sooner or later the truth will come out. In Weiner’s case, the truth has not only failed to set him free, it now threatens to take away everything he holds near and dear. And for that he has no one else to blame but himself.