Anthony Weiner looks like he's trying a comeback. And if the disgraced former New York congressman has any chance of proving that he’s gotten past the sexting scandal that ruined his career in 2011, there’s one major obstacle he needs to conquer: his Twitter account.
That’s why, nearly two years after abandoning the old Twitter handle that got him in so much trouble, Weiner has opened a new account on Twitter with the handle @anthonyweiner. Weiner, who appears to be about to jump into the crowded Democratic field for mayor of New York City, seems hopeful that this time, he can avoid the indiscretions on Twitter that cost him his job in 2011.
So far, Weiner’s new Twitter account seems squeaky clean. The verified account only contains two tweets so far, as well as a tagline reading, “Fighting to keep New York City the Capital of the Middle Class.”
Both of Weiner’s two new tweets contain links to keystothecity.org, which hosts a 20-page document created by Weiner outlining his plans to focus on New York City’s middle class. For Earth Day on Monday, Weiner highlighted Idea 54 in the document, which suggests lifting the city’s new ban on hybrid cabs.
“The so-called ‘Taxi of Tomorrow’ will soon become the only cab that a hack can drive in New York City. It is not a hybrid or electric or any other forward-looking technology,” Weiner explains in the document. “The push for a ‘one size fits all’ approach should be scrapped in favor of incentives for driving the most environmentally sound cabs.”
Ultimately, Weiner hopes that his new Twitter account will help him right some of the wrongs he committed in the past. In 2011, Weiner tweeted a lewd photo of himself to a female follower on Twitter. After several days of denial, he revealed that he had sent sexually explicit text messages to several women both before and after his marriage. After being caught lying, Weiner resigned his Brooklyn-Queens House seat.
Now, however, Weiner sees the opportunity for a fresh start -- and maybe the chance to become mayor.
“It seemed like a fresh start was in order especially in light of all the new ideas around which I am hoping to drive conversation and debate,” Weiner explained in an email to Politicker on Monday.
But does this fresh start have a chance of success? According to new polls from Quinnipac University, Weiner currently second to City Council Speaker Christine Quinn in popularity among Democratic contenders. But Weiner is the only Democratic candidate with a higher unfavorable rating than a favorable one. While 41 percent of all New Yorkers think Weiner should run, 44 percent think he shouldn’t.
It’s entirely possible that Weiner still has a chance in the 2013 mayoral race, but if he really wants to win, it might take more than a new Twitter account.
Eric Brown is an IBTimes political reporter who eats far too much pizza. He is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and currently resides in Brooklyn.