Just under two years after his once-rising political career went up in flames because of an extramarital sexting scandal, former Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner is plotting a possible comeback.
In a long piece posted Wednesday by The New York Times Magazine, journalist Jonathan Van Meter recounts what he's been told by Weiner and the former New York congressman's wife, Huma Abedin, over the course of many interviews in recent months.
And Van Meter drops an eye-catching nugget of news. During a breakfast interview in February, "Weiner quickly put all the speculation to rest: he is eyeing the mayor's race."
That is, a run this year for mayor of New York City.
Weiner's political committee, the Times says, has already spent about $100,000 on polling. Van Meter writes that:
"When I asked what he took away from the polling by David Binder (the full results of which he declined to share with The Times), [Weiner] said: 'People are generally prepared to get over it, but they don't know if they're prepared to vote for me. And there's a healthy number of people who will never get over it. . . . It's a little complicated because I always attracted a fairly substantial amount of people who didn't like me anyway.' He laughed. 'I am a bit of a polarizing case.'
"As for his actual odds? 'David said I'd be the underdog in any race I ran.' "
About her husband and their marriage, Abedin, a longtime aide to Hillary Rodham Clinton, tells Van Meter:
"It took a lot of work, both mentally and in the way we engage with each other, for me to get to a place where I said: 'O.K., I'm in. I'm staying in this marriage.' Here was a man I respected, I loved, was the father of this child inside of me, and he was asking me for a second chance. And I'm not going to say that was an easy or fast decision that I made. It's been almost two years now. I did spend a lot of time saying and thinking: 'I. Don't. Understand.' And it took a long time to be able to sit on a couch next to Anthony and say, 'O.K., I understand and I forgive.' It was the right choice for me. I didn't make it lightly."