May 22nd, 2013
01:51 AM ET
1 year ago

Disgraced ex-congressman Weiner says he's running for NYC mayor

(CNN) – It’s official.

After months of speculation, former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner announced in a YouTube video posted to his campaign website late Tuesday that he is running for mayor of New York City.

“Look, I’ve made some big mistakes and I know I’ve let a lot of people down.  But I’ve also learned some tough lessons,” Weiner says in the video.  “I’m running for mayor because I’ve been fighting for the middle class and those struggling to make it for my entire life. And I hope I get a second chance to work for you.”

His campaign told CNN he does not have any events planned for Wednesday.

Now that Weiner is in the race, the Democrat will undoubtedly face questions from voters and fellow candidates about the 2011 scandal that eventually led to his resignation from Congress.

His political career was derailed after he was found sending lewd photos and messages to multiple women. At first he lied, claiming his Twitter was hacked, but he later admitted to the indiscretions and left the House of Representatives.

But the former congressman from Brooklyn says he’s hoping for a second chance, and has been not-so-quietly testing the waters about a mayoral bid in recent months.

Rumors began swirling in January, after a filing with the New York City Campaign Finance Board revealed that Weiner’s mayoral campaign committee, created ahead of his unsuccessful bid for the Democratic nomination in the 2005 race, had a healthy $4.5 million cash pile.

Weiner later admitted in a lengthy, repentant New York Times Magazine profile in April that he was eyeing the mayor’s race, and confirmed that his political committee had spent more than $100,000 on polling and research.

Also in April, Weiner released a detailed plan outlining his ideas for the city. Called “Keys to the City,” the document, which appears to be a reworked version of a plan Weiner released during his 2009 campaign, lays out 64 ideas to revitalize New York City’s middle class.

Weiner asks New Yorkers for feedback on his plan in his video announcement, which also features a rare appearance from his wife Huma Abedin.

A longtime aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Abedin stayed mostly silent throughout her husband’s scandal, but has been publicly expressing support for his political comeback of late.

“We love this city, and no one will work harder to make it better than Anthony,” Huma says in the video.

This will be Weiner’s third run for mayor of the Big Apple – he ran in 2005 and launched a bid in 2009, but later dropped out when the city council extended the mayor's term limits, allowing incumbent Michael Bloomberg to run again.

Two polls conducted in April indicated that Weiner would jump to second place in the race for Democratic nomination, but would still trail by double digits frontrunner Christine Quinn, the city council president.

Asked about Weiner's candidacy at a forum in New York Wednesday, Quinn wouldn't mention her new rival by name.

"This race, I don't care who's in it, is about what the candidates have done for New York's middle class and what our vision is for New York's middle class moving forward," Quinn said. "And I don't care who enters the race. Nobody has a better, stronger, clearer record of delivering for working class and middle class New Yorkers than I do, and nobody has the set of specific ideas, plans and visions like I do."

–Kevin Liptak, Ashley Killough, Paul Steinhauser and Leigh Remizowski contributed to this report. 


Filed under: Anthony Weiner
soundoff (230 Responses)
  1. DoNotWorry

    This guy is ridiculous.

    May 22, 2013 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  2. fayray11x

    and what's new?

    May 22, 2013 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  3. Iamnotfooled

    Yeah he was wrong. But he would make a good mayor. He is a fighter. Who among you can cast the first stone?

    May 23, 2013 05:07 am at 5:07 am |
  4. Hypatia

    Oh why not? If Sanford could get elected to Congress, this dck can be mayor of NY.

    May 23, 2013 06:51 am at 6:51 am |
  5. Matte

    He is no different than any other politician, at least he was not arrested, like Larry Craig for trying to solicit in the bathrooms. Then Craig tryed to deduct his attorneys fees from his income taxes. He claimed those trips were for official purpose only. Ha, ha, thats a good one.

    May 23, 2013 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
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