This describes the eventual fate of Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y. Weiner's I-won't-resign press conference aside, he'll soon quit -- shoved out by his party, whose members do not want to see the word "Weiner" in their 2012 opponents' attack ads.
The real story here is the initial refusal of the so-called traditional media to take Weinergate seriously. Certainly the story contains juicy, hot-button interest points -- power, politics, a big-name principal married to a top aide of a powerful Cabinet member, the allegation of an online criminal hacking of the Twitter account of a congressman. Potent page one, above-the-fold stuff, right?
Weiner, a seven-term New York congressman and a "rising star in the Democratic Party," once ran for mayor of New York and makes no secret of wanting to try again. Only 11 months ago, he married a young, attractive woman who works as a top aide for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Former President Bill Clinton officiated at the wedding. Weiner helped lead the charge to pass ObamaCare (before trying to get a waiver from it for New York City).
Weiner's vicious us-against-them attacks against Republicans made him a hot number in the Democratic Party and a go-to guy for the MSNBC lineup of left-wing hatchetry. Commentary Magazine's Jonathan Tobin wrote: "Weiner has a well-earned reputation of being one of the most obnoxious members of the House of Representatives but since (Washington Post's Dana) Milbank likes Weiner's politics, he describes him as a 'Brooklyn-born streetfighter' rather than a lout and a bully as he would be called if he were a Tea Party favorite."
Yet it took days, an eternity in today's 24/7 news cycle, to shake the sleep from the eyes of the Big Media. Here's the timeline.
Over the Memorial Day weekend, BigGovernment.com, a website run by conservative, self-described "provocateur" Andrew Breitbart, broke the story that Weiner had sent, via Twitter, a photograph of an aroused man in his undershorts to a female Seattle college student. Weiner denied sending the picture. He called himself a "victim" and accused someone of hacking into his Twitter account. But curiously, he refused to deny that he was the person in the photo. Most guys would know whether someone snapped a close-up photo of themselves in an excited state.
His defenders sprang into action, with onliners such as The Huffington Post and Daily Kos speculating that Breitbart was himself behind the texted photo! A CBS reporter blamed the major media's disinterest in the story on Breitbart. "The person who reported it, Andrew Breitbart," said congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes, "has a history of taking Democrats out of context and smearing them."
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