Representative Anthony Weiner vowed to remain in office on Thursday despite increasing pressure for him to resign for sending lewd pictures of himself to women over the Internet and then lying about it.
“I’m not,” Weiner told the New York Post when asked if he was going to resign.
At least seven of Weiner’s fellow House Democrats have publicly called on him to resign, and congressional aides say other representatives are hoping he quits, but a poll released on Thursday showed 56 percent of adults in his district believe he should stay.
“I betrayed a lot of people and I know it. I’m trying to get back to work now and try to make amends to my constituents and of course to my family,” he told the Post on the streets of Manhattan in video posted on the newspaper’s website.
Should Weiner return to work in Washington, he would have a 6:30 p.m. vote on Monday on Capitol Hill, where a pack of news reporters would likely follow his every move.
Weiner, 46, declined to comment on a New York Times report that his wife of less than one year was pregnant with the couple’s first child, nor would he say if more pictures of himself or his exposed genitalia were likely to surface.
“I exchanged inappropriate things with people and I’ve now got to deal with those consequences. I was completely honest on Monday after I had not been for a while,” Weiner said, referring to his teary-eyed news conference.
Fellow Democrats in Congress have been distancing themselves from the onetime rising star, concerned about the political fallout.
Many voters were more forgiving. Fifty-six percent of adults surveyed in Weiner’s district, which includes parts of Brooklyn and Queens, said he should stay in office, while 33 percent said he should quit, according to an NY1-Marist Poll.
The telephone survey of 512 adults was conducted on Wednesday and had a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percentage points, Marist said.
After vehemently denying for more than a week that he sent a picture of his bulging boxer briefs to a woman in Seattle, claiming he was the victim of hacking, Weiner tearfully admitted to lying about the scandal on Monday, when he said he had inappropriate exchanges with six women, some after he was married.
He also vowed to remain in his post and preserve his marriage to Huma Abedin, 35, an aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Abedin is in the early stages of pregnancy with the couple’s first child, The New York Times reported on Wednesday, citing three unidentified people with knowledge of the situation.
Former President Bill Clinton officiated at their wedding last July amid much fanfare that Washington’s newest power couple comprised Abedin, a Muslim, and Weiner, who is Jewish.
Copyright © 2011 The Associated Press