New York Democrat Rep. Charlie Rangel said that the disgraced and embattled Anthony Weiner should not drop out of the New York City mayoral race, explaining that that the media hype surrounding Weiner’s most recent sexting scandal would die down on an interview with MSNBC Wednesday.
“Constitutionally, politically, anyone can run, but knowing New Yorkers as I do, and I do know New Yorkers, this is not going to be a story by the time we get to September 10,” Rangel said, smiling.
“I don’t think the public has been heard yet, really. It’s all been newspapers and TV. Nobody I know understands at all what Anthony Weiner was thinking about,” he continued. “And right now, I think you would agree that we are all concerned about his wife. She’s a brave lady.”
But the longtime congressman expressed a pained sympathy for Abedin.
“I have seen a lot of things like this in politics, where males have to lean on their wives for support. But I don’t ever recall seeing a wife looking and feeling so sad and embarrassed, because Huma is a very private person, a very delicate, sophisticated person,” Rangel said. “And all the years that I’ve known her, putting her into this political situation, as bright, as intelligent as she is, is very awkward. And my feelings were all for her in terms of what she felt she had to do for her husband. It’s really a sad day,” Rangel said.
Both Rangel and Abedin have worked for and supported Hillary Clinton for years. During the 2008 Democratic primary, Rangel dismissed the then-junior senator Barack Obama and threw his support behind Clinton: “There’s just no question in my mind that Hillary would be in a better position than a freshman senator. This ain’t no time for a beginner.”
Rangel finally endorsed Obama when he won the 2008 Democratic nomination.