Huma Abedin, a close aide to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, has announced that she will separate from her husband, former Congressman Anthony Weiner. This announcement follows a report from the New York Post alleging that he had sent inappropriate, sexual messages to a woman who was not his wife—the third time he's been caught doing so.
The Post’s article featured text messages and photos that Weiner sent to the woman (a Trump supporter, to add insult to injury) while Abedin was campaigning with Clinton.
The statement Abedin released made clear her decision to separate from her husband was not made lightly, saying, "After long and painful consideration and work on my marriage, I have made the decision to separate from my husband," as well as asking for privacy for herself, her husband, and her son. "Anthony and I remain devoted to doing what is best for our son, who is the light of our life. During this difficult time, I ask for respect for our privacy."
On Monday, the day after the Post’s article was published, Weiner deleted his Twitter account.
The Post’s report also includes the unnerving discovery that Weiner included pictures of his son among the photos he sent the woman, who Weiner claims is a friend.
Weiner’s “friend” reportedly cooperated fully with the Post, sharing all of the messages and pictures that she and Weiner exchanged, provided that she remain anonymous. She also told the paper that the exchange of messages between herself and Weiner began last January.
Weiner’s only comment to the newspaper denies any wrongdoing on his part or his friend’s: "She has asked me not to comment except to say that our conversations were private, often included pictures of her nieces and nephews and my son and were always appropriate," Weiner insists.
However, the New York Post’s report shows that the conversations were not always appropriate. Many of the photos that the newspaper published were of Weiner, and many of the messages he sent were about sex.
If this story sounds familiar, it’s because it is. Anthony Weiner used to be a Congressman from New York, but he was forced to resign in 2011 amid similar allegations of having an extramarital affair through sexting. He ran for Mayor of New York City in 2013, after supposedly attending therapy. During the mayoral race, it was discovered that Weiner was still sexting, just under a pseudonym, which led to him losing the election.
The entire story is so bizarre that it inspired its own movie, appropriately titled “Weiner".
Abedin has worked closely with Hillary Clinton for 20 years, and is known to be influential in making policy decisions. The New York Times reports that Clinton found out about Weiner's latest sexting on Sunday. And of course, Donald Trump has commented on the scandal, saying Abedin made a "very wise decision" to separate from Weiner but that Clinton was "careless and negligent in allowing Weiner to have such close proximity to highly classified information."