Anthony Weiner Resigns: Timeline Of Photos, Twitter Scandal Fallout (PHOTOS, VIDEO)
Below, a timeline of events and developments in the online scandal and fallout involving Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) that unfolded in recent weeks.
Friday, May 27: Weiner uses his Twitter account to send a waist-down photograph of a man's underpants to a 21-year-old female college student in Seattle. He quickly deletes it and sends out a tweet saying that his Facebook account was hacked.
Saturday, May 28: BigGovernment.com, a website run by conservative commentator Andrew Breitbart, first reports that Weiner sent the lewd photo. Weiner was a Twitter follower of the female college student who received the photo.
Sunday, May 29: A Weiner spokesman tells AP that the lewd photograph of a crotch sent from Weiner's Twitter account was just "a distraction" perpetrated by a hacker.
Tuesday, May 31: Weiner returns to Capitol Hill after the Memorial Day weekend and testily fends off reporters' questions about whether he sent the lewd photo.
"I'm not going to talk about this anymore," Weiner told reporters. "I think that if I was giving a speech to 45,000 people and someone stood up and heckled in the back, I wouldn't spend three days talking to him. I'm going to get back to the conversation I care about."
Weiner declines to answer reporters' questions about the photo or why he was hiring a lawyer for the case instead of having law enforcement officials pursue the matter.
Wednesday, June 1: Weiner does a round of network and cable TV interviews, telling MSNBC that he cannot say "with certitude" whether the photo of a man's underpants was of him or not. He jokes a little about it.
"I'm not sure I want to put national, federal resources into trying to figure out who posted a picture on Weiner's website, uh, whatever," he says in explaining why he didn't report the alleged hacking to Capitol Police. I'm not really sure it rises, no pun intended, to that level."
Here's a clip of an interview Weiner conducted with Fox News:
Monday, June 6: The scandal escalates as Breitbart's BigGovernment.com website publishes photos purportedly from a second woman who said she received shirtless shots of the congressman. The site says the pictures were in a cache of intimate online photographs, chats and email exchanges the woman claimed to have. The website does not identify the woman.
Photo from BigGovernment.com:
Responding, a tearful Weiner makes a profuse public apology at a Manhattan news conference. He admits sending a photo of his underwear-clad crotch to a young woman over Twitter and then lying repeatedly to protect himself.
"This was me doing a dumb thing, and doing it repeatedly, and lying about it," says Weiner.
Weiner also admits he had engaged in inappropriate contact with six women over the course of three years through social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook and occasionally over the phone. He says he had never met or had a physical relationship with any of the women and was not even sure of their ages.
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi calls for a House ethics investigation into whether he broke the rules. Democratic leaders voice disappointment and embarrassment, reflecting an erosion of support for Weiner.
Weiner insists he did nothing wrong, and begins making calls to Democratic colleagues to apologize. He says he has no plans to resign.
Tuesday, June 7: With most Democrats still keeping an uncomfortable silence, Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid steps out and delivers a sharp rebuff to Weiner. It's a clear sign of mounting frustrations fellow Democrats have with a scandal they want to see over as soon as possible.
"I know Congressman Weiner," Reid told reporters. "I wish there was some way I can defend him, but I can't."
Wednesday, June 8: An X-rated photo Weiner purportedly took of himself surfaces on a website. Weiner's office issues a statement that did not deny it had been taken of him.
News breaks that Weiner's wife of less than a year, Huma Abedin, an aide to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, is pregnant. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, D-Pa., is the first of several House Democrats to say he should leave office. Pressure for Weiner to resign increases from Democrats.
Friday, June 10: Weiner acknowledges he had exchanged online messages with a 17-year-old girl in Delaware. He says nothing improper had passed between the two of them. At least 9 House Democrats and two Democratic senators call for Weiner to resign.
Saturday, June 11: Rebuffing calls from top Democratic leaders, including Pelosi, to resign, Weiner announces he plans to take a temporary leave of absence from the House and seek unspecified treatment.
The images appeared to have been taken by Weiner himself in what was reported to be the House Members Gym. TMZ.com relayed confirmation at the time on the location of where the pictures were taken by the lawmaker on his Blackberry. The photos were reportedly sent to at least one woman.
A source close to Weiner told the New York Daily News that the congressman was surprised it took two weeks for the pictures to surface.
ANN CURRY: Should Congressman Anthony Weiner resign?
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, obviously what he did was highly inappropriate. I think he's embarrassed himself, he's acknowledged that, he's embarrassed his wife and his family. Ultimately there's going to be a decision for him and his constituents. I can tell you that if it was me, I would resign. Because public service is exactly that, it's a service to the public. And when you get to the point where, because of various personal distractions, you can't serve as effectively as you need to at the time when people are worrying about jobs and their mortgages and paying the bills, then you should probably step back.
On June 13, Weiner's request for a leave of absence from the House was approved by unanimous consent.
Tuesday, June 14: House Democrats found themselves wrestling with how to move on from the Weiner scandal. Democrats met behind closed doors for the first time since the New York congressman admitted to sexually charged online relationships with several women and lying to hide his misdeeds.
Heading into the meeting, Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, (D-N.Y.) told reporters without elaborating, "Hopefully, we're hearing he might resign in a couple of days."
The same day, House Speaker John Boehner urged Weiner to step down from his post. Until that point, the Republican leader had allowed Democrats to contend with the matter, but when asked by a reporter if he thought the embattled congressman should resign, Boehner responded, "Yes."
Wednesday, June 15: Weiner's House Democratic colleagues sought to find a way to prompt Weiner to resign. Adding fuel to fire amid the controversy, Weiner's pregnant wife, Huma Abedin, returned from a trip to Africa with her boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Meanwhile, a former porn actress claiming to have engaged in inappropriate online interactions with Weiner held a press conference to address the controversy.
Here's what Ginger Lee had to say about her involvement in the scandal:
"I did not sext Anthony Weiner," Lee said in a statement. "I did not send photos to him or receive photos from him. Any time he would take conversations in a sexual direction, I would not reciprocate."
“When the scandal broke and people started emailing me, I did not know what to do. So I emailed Anthony Weiner. He asked me to lie about our communication."
"I think that Anthony Weiner should resign, because he lied to the public and the press for more than a week," Lee concluded.
Later in the day, it was reported that Democratic leaders had planned to meet the next day to discuss the next step in handling the controversy. According to Politico, Weiner's colleagues were considering stripping him of his committee assignments in an effort to push him out of office.
Thursday, June 16: News broke on Thursday morning of Weiner's intention to resign from congress.
“At least the nightmare is over,” one source close to Weiner said.
Another told The Huffington Post that Weiner called Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) Wednesday, informing him of his plans.
At her weekly press conference on Thursday morning, Pelosi said, "If you are here to ask a question about Congressman Weiner I won't be answering." She added, "I have made the statements I am going to make."
Later in the day, Weiner announced that he would be stepping down from his post at a press conference in his New York district. The embattled lawmaker was interrupted by hecklers shouting obscenities while speaking to members of the press.