‘Weinergate’: The evidence for and against.
Slate lays out the evidence on both sides, but here’s the bottom line:
An official investigation would clear all this up. A law enforcement agency could subpoena Twitter or Yfrog for the IP address from which the photo and tweet were posted. If that IP address pointed to a machine other than Weiner’s, case closed. Or, if Weiner would rather avoid the hassle, he could always just drop trou.
I started out believing Weiner, and I hope he is vindicated in the end.
But I’m flabbergasted at how he has handled this. In his interview with Wolf Blitzer and another interview with Rachael Maddow, he kept downplaying the incident as a “prank” and a “joke” and saying it’s not worthy of a “federal investigation.” Well, if somebody hacked into my Twitter account and tried to destroy my reputation, I would consider that a very serious crime, worthy of a police investigation.
As far as the underlying alleged scandal goes, it’s not even something I would have considered a big deal if he had just owned up to it from the beginning. If it turns out to be true, it’s a case of the cover-up being worse than the (non) crime. As far as I know, America is a free country and flirting with a female college student is not a crime. David Vitter got away with worse. Arnold Schwarzenegger (allegedly) did a lot worse when he was governor of California.