Anthony Weiner: A Timeline of the Politician's Sexting Scandals
Weiner and wife Huma Abedin have weathered three major scandals related to his habit of sexting women in the past five years
On Monday, news broke that Huma Abedin separated from her husband, former Congressman Anthony Weiner, as a third sexting scandal tied to the New York ex-politician came to light.
“After long and painful consideration and work on my marriage, I have made the decision to separate from my husband,” Abedin said in a statement. “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.”
The couple, who were married in July 2010 by former President Bill Clinton, weathered quite a storm of scandals before Monday’s news. Here’s a look back:
May 31, 2011
The first of Weiner’s sexting scandals, in which a photo of the then-46-year-old New York Congressman’s boxer-brief-clad crotch was accidentally sent to all 40,000 of his Twitter followers – instead of only to the intended recipient, 21-year-old Seattleite Gennette Cordova – hit the news. Weiner initially blamed the incident (swiftly dubbed #Weinergate) on a hack, and Cordova denied ever having met Weiner, calling the episode “outlandish.”
June 6, 2011
The Monday after the scandal broke, Weiner recanted his hacking story, admitting that he had been inappropriately communicating online with six women over the last three years, a time-frame that included his wedding to Abedin. “I haven’t told the truth,” he said in a press conference. “I have done things I deeply regret. I apologize to my wife and our families. I’m deeply ashamed.” He stated that he and Abedin “have no intention of splitting up … We’ve been through a great deal together and will weather this.”
June 8, 2011
Just two days after the emotional press conference in which Weiner admitted to the breadth of his online infidelity, The New York Times reported that he and Abedin, 35, were expecting their first child. Abedin, a top aide to Hillary Clinton for years, had not been seen in public since the scandal broke.
June 11, 2011
Weiner took a leave of absence from Congress to “seek professional treatment to focus on becoming a better husband and healthier person,” spokeswoman Risa Heller said in a statement. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was among Weiner’s peers who urged him to seek help, according to The New York Times.
June 16, 2011
Weiner held a press conference in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, where he was first elected to City Council in 1992, to announce his resignation from Congress. He spoke for less than five minutes and apologized to his constituents and his wife (who was not present). At one point, a heckler shouted, “Bye bye, pervert!”
December 21, 2011
Weiner and Abedin’s first child, Jordan Zain was born. “Zain” is after Huma’s late father, and “Jordan” is “evocative of the river that is important to both of our cultures,” Weiner explained to PEOPLE in 2012. Weiner was raised Jewish and Abedin was raised Muslim.
“I’ve tried to become a better person, a husband that Huma deserves and as good a father as I can be,” he said in the same interview. “And I’ve explored every way to try to do those things and I’m committed to continuing on that path.”
July 23, 2013
Weiner – this time with Abedin at his side – held another press conference to admit that he had again been exchanging sexually explicit photos and text messages with a woman online. Prior to this, Weiner had been near the top of polls in the race for New York City’s mayoral seat. (Abedin had been playing a visible role in his campaign.) Three of Weiner’s rivals in the race called for him to drop out.
July 26, 2013
A source revealed to PEOPLE that despite undergoing counseling with him, Abedin considered leaving Weiner after the second round of his sexting scandals hit the news. “She was seriously considering what to do, thinking: ‘Maybe, I can’t do this.’ There was a possibility of leaving on the table,” the source said.
July 31, 2013
Abedin’s longtime friend, New York businesswoman Rory Tahari, told PEOPLE that Abedin’s decision to stay with Weiner through the scandals came down to one thing: their son. “Huma has a very strong moral character, and she made a commitment for better or worse,” Tahari said. “She never wanted Jordan to say to her, ‘Why didn’t you do everything you could to help Dad?'”
May 20, 2016
, a documentary exploring the politician’s fall from grace, opened in theaters. In a film packed with painful moments, perhaps the worst comes when “Pineapple” (the nickname for Sydney Leathers, one of the women with whom Weiner was having phone sex with using the alias “Carlos Danger”) showed up at Weiner’s office on the day of the mayoral election. He avoided her at his office, but later found out that she was waiting at his campaign headquarters. “I’m not going to face the indignity of being accosted by this woman,” Abedin says to her husband in a clip. He tells her, “Huma, don’t come.”
Aug. 28, 2016
The New York Post published a lengthy story about Weiner’s latest round of sexts, these beginning in 2015 with a West Coast woman. The biggest bombshell: His son is next to him in bed in one of the inappropriate photos. Abedin’s statement about the pair’s separation comes the next day.