Risa Heller, spokeswoman for the 46-year-old New York congressman, revealed that the congressman had departed “to seek professional treatment to focus on becoming a better husband and healthier person”. She added: “In light of that, he will request a short leave of absence from the House of Representatives so that he can get evaluated and map out a course of treatment to make himself well.”
This development came just 24 hours after Weiner first acknowledged he had exchanged online messages with a 17-year-old girl in the state of Delaware, although he insisted nothing improper had passed between them. He also finally admitted sending a picture of himself in his underwear via Twitter to another woman.
Democrats said the concerted call for Weiner’s resignation has been brewing for days, as senior party officials concluded the scandal was interfering with their attempts to gain political momentum in advance of the 2012 elections, but the report on Friday that Mr. Weiner corresponded on Twitter with the 17-year-old girl further inflamed the situation.
A Democratic National Committee official told members of Mr. Weiner’s staff that the congressman’s assertion that his exchanges with the girl, a high school junior, were “neither explicit nor indecent” did not really matter at this point.
.The official added that House Democratic leader, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California had spoken numerous times with Weiner in an attempt to persuade him to step down for the good of the party, telling him that because of the media focus on his predicament their attacks on a Republican Medicare proposal were going unnoticed. The Republicans have proposed major cuts in the government-run Medicare programme which provides healthcare to the elderly.
According to a high-ranking Democratic official, Senior Democrats are extremely frustrated with Mr. Weiner because has repeatedly told them he could not resign now because his wife, Huma Abedin, was traveling abroad with her boss, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton — an assertion they viewed as an unpersuasive pretext.
Ms. Pelosi had hoped that the congressman would reach the decision on his own to go