May 22nd, 2013
01:51 AM ET
10 years 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. Ron

    There's no such thing as bad publicity. Legions of stupid people will recognize his name, believe his promises and probably elect him just like they elect so many other dirt bags.

    May 22, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  2. Michael Andrew Wrongicho

    Bloomberg has served three times...the new limit, so he cannot run again.

    May 22, 2013 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    He showed a pic of his "covered" and gets crucified.

    Repubs use theirs on women, men, boys, and it's just a mistake - forgive me - 2nd chance for them.

    May 22, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  4. scott

    Some profesional politicians need to hang it up. (No Pun intended) Term Limits is so needed.

    May 22, 2013 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  5. John B

    The character of this person has established that he is morally unsuited to hold any position of competence and quite frankly should be banned from competing.

    May 22, 2013 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Wiener here says he is for the middle class? right. the middle class vote. nice try republicans

    May 22, 2013 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  7. Jam One

    Journalists paid him to run just for the headlines. This is the only rational explanation.

    May 22, 2013 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  8. Suzyqpie

    He will have to keep it up and not let the past dog him.

    May 22, 2013 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  9. Hamburger Jones

    "This should not be a surprise to anyone, this is a Democrat, and when Democrats commit crimes of any kind that would put a tax payer in jail, they only get elected or promoted. Now this has been demonstrated over and over with Democrats on more than one occasion."
    Dick Cheney is a Democrat? Wow!!

    May 22, 2013 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  10. cathstar

    What does "morally suited" mean nowadays? If morals came into play, we would have just about no candidates to run for any office. This is sad but true.

    May 22, 2013 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  11. Hamburger Jones

    "Legions of stupid people will recognize his name" To be fair, EVERYONE recognizes the name Weiner. They sell them at bus stations.

    May 22, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  12. us_1776

    The guy made silly naive mistakes on social media.

    Millions of others have done the same or worse.

    New Yorkers are forgiving. They'll elect him.


    May 22, 2013 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  13. david alejandro

    1. Bloomberg is not running for reelection: term limits. 2. People's personal lives are no one business but his own. I'm not judging Anthony Weiner for his mistakes; that's between him and his God. I only care about his political views and administrative skills. Subjective "morals", like religion, have no place in politics. Anthony may not be husband of the year (but that's still for his wife, Huma, to decide) but he is a damn good politician and his political views are on the right side of history.

    May 22, 2013 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  14. me

    @Dusty Ones... well, back in the day, they voted for a McCheeseburger so why not a weiner?

    May 22, 2013 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  15. me

    @ david alejandro... I'm sure there have been some good principals who turned out to be pedophiles, thus they are gone for good... anyone disturbed enough to do what Anthony did, then lie about it and then 2 years later think it's small enough of an issue that he should return to the political spotlight should tell you all you need to know about someone so egocentric... I'm Democratic and I would NEVER give this weirdo my support regardless of qualifications... anyone who would, should have their head examined!

    May 22, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  16. Bzarr

    If those idi0ts in South Carolina can elect that derelict ex governor to congress. This guy can certainly be elected as mayor in New York.

    May 22, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  17. sonnie3

    For a person that likes to take pictures of his privates and send them on the electronic media and now want to be mayor of new York. Stupid is as Stupid does.

    May 22, 2013 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  18. Tim

    I wish I were the Mayor Tony Weiner
    That is what I truly wish to be
    cause if i were the Mayor Tony Weiner
    everyone could have a pic
    oh everyone could have a pic
    everyone could have a pic of me

    May 22, 2013 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  19. Deborah Alfano

    If people actually elect this man for Mayor then New York has lost its soul and any form of credibility.

    May 22, 2013 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  20. jonnyg

    Which Democrats haven disgraced themselves again? I'm starting to lose track

    May 22, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  21. Allan

    Weiner should go back to the rock he crawled out from under.

    May 22, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  22. Loyalright

    He just don't want to get a real job. Hard work would do him some good including Congress.

    May 22, 2013 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  23. me

    @jonnyg... oh, yes, of course it's a partisan thing... you wouldn't be from South Carolina would you?

    May 22, 2013 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  24. Liberal Sense (Or lack thereof)

    Democrats will vote him back in that you can count on.

    May 22, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  25. hender1123

    At least he has a resume. People saw him in school. He has a certificate of graduation on the wall. He has only one SSN and a birth certificate. By the standards of the day he's over qualified.

    May 22, 2013 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
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