News and Commentary

Days Before Sentencing, Anthony Weiner Seeks Leniency

Disgraced former Congressman Anthony Weiner is seeking a lenient sentence following his conviction for transferring obscene material to a minor. Both Weiner and his soon-to-be ex-wife Huma Abedin wrote letters to Judge Denise L. Cote of the United States District Court of the Southern District of New York for consideration to lessen his sentence.

Weiner wrote the following in his five-page letter:

My regret for my crime is profound. I have endangered the wellbeing of a 15 year old girl who reached out to me on the internet. My continued acting out over years crushed the aspirations of my wife and ruined our marriage. I am so deeply sorry for the harm I have done to her, and I live with the sorrow that I will never be able to fix that. And the one perfect thing in my life – my son – will forever have to answer questions about the public and private failings of his father. My regret keeps me awake at night and fills me with fear from the moment I awaken. There are daily, even hourly, reminders of my failings. I can’t imagine ever not feeling regret.

Now that I’m further along in recovery, I understand the idea that hitting a bottom is necessary to bring us to help. It was the case for me. After years of deploying every imaginable form of denial, I came to understand that I had an untreated and even an unrecognized mental disorder that corrupted my judgment profoundly. I have a disease that tells me I have no disease.

Weiner continues by acknowledging the progress that he has made in recovery to correct the moral and legal failings he committed over the past few years. He also expressed his hope to be a role model to his son after hitting rock bottom. Afterward, he asks the following to Judge Cote:

Your Honor, this is my life now. It’s the right size. It’s working at a job that doesn’t make headlines but lets me be a real financial partner to my wife in raising my son. It’s being a support to people who are struggling worse than I am and accepting their help when I need a hand. It’s having a connection to a higher power that reminds me every day to be kinder and more considerate. My life isn’t big and loud anymore. Every day I quietly do what I can to keep getting better, and to fix the damage I’ve done. I have much more work to do. Please show me grace so that I may continue.

Abedin wrote the following on behalf of Weiner:

This is not a letter I ever imagined I would write, but, with Anthony, I have repeatedly found myself in circumstances I never imagined. I am devastated by Anthony’s actions, and I understand that he must face their consequences.

However, as a mother, I have always done and will do anything I think will help [their son] be as safe, happy, healthy, and complete as possible.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office indicated that they’re looking to sentence Weiner to 21 to 27 months for a crime that carries a maximum sentence of 10 years. The sentencing will occur on Monday, September 25.

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