Exclusive: Dem colleagues privately urge Weiner resignation 'to preserve his own dignity'
June 8th, 2011
05:24 PM ET
11 years ago

Exclusive: Dem colleagues privately urge Weiner resignation 'to preserve his own dignity'

Washington (CNN) - A Democratic lawmaker familiar with discussions with and about Anthony Weiner told CNN that Weiner’s colleagues are telling him this afternoon he should resign “to preserve his own dignity.”

This Democratic congressman says this afternoon’s public call by Democratic Rep. Allyson Schwartz, D-Pennsylvania, for Weiner to resign is part of a new stepped up effort to force Weiner out. Schwartz heads up recruiting efforts for House Democrats for the 2012 election cycle. The source said the effort includes private and public calls explicitly telling Weiner it’s time to leave Congress.

“There is increased resentment by his colleagues that far from having a press conference where he was going to tell the truth and roll with the flames, the flames are just getting worse and he’s dragging us through it. We really thought by now, after the press conference, we would be able to talk about the Republicans’ Social Security privatization bill and instead we keep talking about Anthony Weiner. And people are getting angrier and more resentful,” said the Democratic congressman.

The lawmaker would not speak on the record in order to discuss private conversations, and would not give the names of Weiner’s colleagues making these private calls.

This Democratic congressman cited a new x-rated photograph now flying across the internet, allegedly of Weiner, as the latest example of how this issue is not going away, but said it is unclear if Weiner is going to listen.

“I think he is truly conflicted and the people around him are truly conflicted. Nobody knows what is going to work. I mean, he doesn’t know what he wants to do. Really, I think he’s really conflicted about this. But there is real growing resentment among his colleagues,” said the Democratic congressman.

In addition to Schwartz, calls from other House Democrats for Weiner to step down started trickling in on Wednesday.

Maine House Democratic Rep. Michael Michaud told his local newspaper, the Kennebec Journal, this morning that Weiner should resign.

"I am hoping that the congressman will do what's right for his family, and probably the best decision would be to step down," Michaud said.

Late Wednesday afternoon Indiana Democratic Congressman Joe Donnelly, who is running for Senate, called on Weiner to step down from Congress and said he’s donating $5,000 in campaign contributions he received from Weiner to Indiana charities.

"Enough is enough. It's time for Congressman Weiner to resign. His actions have disgraced the Congress. Everyone should be focused on jobs and the economy and his refusal to do the right thing is a distraction,” Donnelly said in a statement.

A senior conservative Democrat, Rep. Mike Ross, Arkansas, told the AP at an event in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, that Weiner should have resigned when he confessed that he sent inappropriate photos. Ross also said “appropriate authorities” should investigate. Ross’ office confirmed the congressman’s comments to CNN.

Massachusetts Rep. Niki Tsongas’ Chief of Staff Katie Elbert Enos, released a statement saying, “The Congresswoman thinks it would be appropriate for Congressman Weiner to step down.”

And Christopher Schuler, spokesman for North Carolina Democrat Larry Kissell told CNN, "Congressman Kissell believes that Representative Weiner should resign."

The Democratic lawmaker familiar with the behind the scenes talks also said to expect more public calls Thursday but warned that this story is “changing by the hour.”

Asked about the new public calls for Weiner to resign Wednesday, a senior Democratic source said, “It’s a signal that represents a growing concern in the caucus.”

soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. homer

    This is an issue between wiener, his wife and his constituents. Congress should focus on getting the budget and run away regulations under control.

    June 8, 2011 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  2. B

    I have been a supporter of this guy and now, along with all of the rest who have shown their true colors, should get out and should have never been there to begin with !What ever happened to Statesmanship and Honorable behavior anyway.

    What ever happened to statesmanship and honorable behavior anyway. We like to call ourselves the best in the World, but I am beginning to think we are losing it big-time now.

    June 8, 2011 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    Is blackmail illegal?

    June 8, 2011 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  4. Republican Robber Baron

    So Vitter slept with hookers, broke federal and state laws and gets standing ovation by the GOP establishment? Weiner should go but it's rich the Republican activist act as if Vitter is a swell guy and should keep his jobs...while trying to pile-on against Weiner.

    June 8, 2011 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  5. K3Citizen

    Will his resignation help our economy? Pretending to be morally righteous is how Bush operated and look how that worked out!

    June 8, 2011 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  6. Lola

    OK, enough already! I just read online that his wife is indeed pregnant and I feel really sorry for her. It would have been easier for the public to forgive him if he had just come out and owned up to his actions. But he concocted a lie to cover up his actions and that is worse than the sexting itself, and it does not matter whether he is a Democrat or Republican. He needs to get out so the media will leave him alone. If he does not, his biggest victim, unfortunately would be his wife and unborn child....

    June 8, 2011 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  7. Bruce A Gordineer

    Clinton did not have to step down and he went all the way and lied about it.Why the push?

    June 8, 2011 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  8. A Kickin` Donkey

    this has been a "no brainer" from the moment he stared into the camera and said, "I did not send the photo".

    I might have supported him based on a tweet of him in his briefs but he lied right to my face. You gotta go.

    The needs of the MANY outweigh the needs of the FEW, or of the ONE. 1st Officer Spock.

    June 8, 2011 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  9. Doug

    With what Wiener has done he has actually, like Rangel, gained more support in his district with his actions. See Democrats can now completely identify with him as they have not an ounce of integrity and are completely self center narcissists just like the Wiener.

    Jersey Shore actually shows these Democrats in the best light possible. You should come here and witness 'dem for yourself. You will see that these Democrats have actually gotten worse, worse than when they first started cutting eye holes out of their bed sheets in the 19th century.

    June 8, 2011 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  10. Sylvia Saint

    It`s a Democratic District – it will stay BLUE. Leave.

    NY`s Governor, Cuomo, is a Democrat. He picks the iterim Congreman upon Weiner`s resignation.

    Weiner GO NOW!

    June 8, 2011 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  11. DanoMcRoo

    LOL.......I hope this psychopath never resigns!

    June 8, 2011 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  12. Andres

    'Preserve his own dignity'? I think it is much too late for that.

    June 8, 2011 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  13. Amir

    Leave the man alone... This is a private matter, between him and his wife.

    June 8, 2011 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  14. silverlining48

    One word: "Vitter". I think Congressman Weiner should say "When David Vitter resigns, I will resign. Until then, the voters in my district should make the decision to not vote for me, or to vote for me in the next election." The GOP has a double standard when sex scandals involve their own, and Anthony Weiner is being ask to resign by Democrats who are worried about theiir own elections. Vitter for example, was involved with more than one prostitution ring, including the D.C. Madam..He physically cheated on his wife with prostitutes, bringing her out when he confessed after months of lying so she could look humiliated as he finally told the truth. Vitter did not resign, he is still in office for a far worse sex scandal that actually involved SEX., and Vitter broke the law, or several laws that he was never charged with. Weiner did Not have sex with the womwn on Twitter and Facebook, as far as is known at this point. Allow the ethics committee to do their job, and decide if Weiner broke any laws.

    June 8, 2011 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  15. Laura518

    I really don't care about politican's sex lives. We should stay out of it. Oh, I know..they will say "it's not that he did this, it's that he LIED". My point is that we shouldn't even be asking the question. It's not our business. I am a Democrat...and this goes for the sex lives of Republicans as well. My only issue with Republicans is that they try to take the higher morality road. Both sides use these issues to disgrace the other side – for poltiical advantage. Leave it alone – and let them do their jobs.

    June 8, 2011 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  16. GOP = Greed Over People

    Today's photo pretty much assures Mr. Weiner no longer has any dignity to preserve, and it is certainly conduct unbecoming to a member of Congress..

    So, resign, end the media frenzy and avoid the ethics investigation.

    As, a private citizen, feel free to set up a live feed if you wish however, I do not recommend and more tweets about your "sweets"!!

    June 8, 2011 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  17. clarke

    This is all getting silly. I feel he should just step down, move on and build a new life, if you can. Your people want you to go away, out of sight, out of mind, just like the others. If the man had any dignity, he would not be in this pickle, so he really nothing to preserve. My Grandmother always said, "If you are going to dance, you have to pay the fiddler."

    June 8, 2011 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
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