Weiner Had to Know

There might have been a place for a Mayor Weiner. But the city of New York deserves far better than a Mayor Danger, writes Michael Daly.

07.24.13 11:04 AM ET

Well, Carlos Danger, I mean Anthony Weiner, you had to know that New Yorkers assumed you had learned your lesson back when you resigned.

You had to know the voters you are wooing did not imagine that you kept up your Internet antics right into last fall, and with someone young enough to be your daughter.

You had to know that when you said other things might come out that everybody figured you meant from before you were caught, and certainly before you told People magazine that you were a new Anthony.

But you clearly felt no obligation to explicitly say otherwise. That is called a lie by omission. And, in telling that lie after all the overt lies, you insulted the people of the remarkably forgiving city who were open to granting you an opportunity to redeem yourself.

“I hope they’re willing to still continue giving me a second chance,” you said at the press conference yesterday after it became known you had in fact kept it up until right around election time last year.

Well, you already blew the second chance. What you are really asking for is a third chance.

Manifestly in your favor is your wife, Huma, who made everybody who saw the press conference wish she were the one running for mayor. The only thing anybody could say bad about her is her choice of a husband.

But love often defies reason.

And, if Abedin says she is standing by you, who are we to say otherwise? Unless we consider your online pseudonym. Carlos Danger would seem to be no accident.

It would seem to be an implicit acknowledgement that there was danger in what you were doing. But what could the danger be if you had already wrecked your congressional career and deeply hurt your wife? Oh, that’s right, you knew that people assumed you had desisted after witnessing the destruction you had caught.

You knew that people who believed you were chastened and reformed would be shocked.

You knew that at least some of them would feel you had betrayed them.

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That made it dangerous. And danger is clearly part of what gave you a thrill as you carried on your affair with yourself. What were you thinking, if they only knew? Maybe it was just, suckers!

And you were still trying to play everybody for a sucker when you said yesterday that there was nothing really new. If that were so, why have a press conference? And why put Abedin through what was clearly a very difficult debut before the press as the candidate’s wife?

The problem is the people you ask to vote for you face too many real dangers. They need a mayor who is worthy of their trust, who does not seek to take advantage of their manifest goodness. Who does not get a tingle at the thought of how they would respond of they knew the full truth.

You say you care about them. You say you want what is best for them. If that is not just another lie, then do not ask them for a third chance, even though they just might give it to you.

There might have been a place for a Mayor Weiner. But the city of New York deserves far better than a Mayor Danger.