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VIDEO: Wasserman-Schultz Discusses Weiner Scandal on ‘Meet the Press’

Posted on | June 12, 2011 | 68 Comments

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From the NBC transcript:

MR. GREGORY: Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, let me start with you.
REP. SCHULTZ: Sure.
MR. GREGORY: What, what led to the change? Why now call for him to resign?
REP. SCHULTZ: Well, I think that since this story broke we were giving Congressman Weiner some breathing room to be able to be, be circumspect, do the right thing, make a — you know, reach the conclusion that, that he needed to step back and step down on his own. And as of yesterday, when that didn’t happen, it was important to, to weigh in.
MR. GREGORY: But before his actual admission, you spoke about this during an interview, and this is what you said.

(Videotape, June 2, 2011)
REP. SCHULTZ: Anthony Weiner is dealing with a personal matter, and it should be left as a personal matter.
(End videotape)

MR. GREGORY: When did it become less a personal matter and more an issue of public trust?
REP. SCHULTZ: Well, I made that statement before it had been revealed that Anthony had not been truthful, and that, that, that he was engaged in the conduct that he had been denying at the time. And once he crossed that threshold, acknowledged that, that he’d been lying, had engaged in conduct that is, you know, completely unacceptable and indefensible…
MR. PRIEBUS: Well, here’s the problem, David.
REP. SCHULTZ: …that’s where I thought that the — that’s where I thought the line was crossed.
MR. GREGORY: Well, I’ll come to you in just a second.
But is this enough that he seeks treatment, or would you still like him to straight out resign?
REP. SCHULTZ: The statement I made speaks for itself yesterday. I think Anthony Weiner needs to resign so he can focus on his family, focus on his own well-being, and make sure that…
MR. GREGORY: So there’s going to be more pressure from top Democrats to say this is not quite enough, leave of absence is not enough, he should step down completely.
REP. SCHULTZ: I think Leader Pelosi, Steve Israel, myself, we all came together yesterday…
MR. GREGORY: Well, what, what is it you can do? I mean, he’s obviously not listening to the admonitions of his colleagues.
REP. SCHULTZ: Well, at, at the end of the day, you know, a member of Congress makes their own decision, and that, that’s certainly going to be up to Anthony Weiner. But we have made clear that he needs to resign, he needs to focus on, on getting his, his own personal issues in order…
MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.
REP. SCHULTZ: …focus on his family and, and do the right thing…
MR. GREGORY: From your, from your…
REP. SCHULTZ: …by his constituents.

Politico notes Wasserman-Schultz’s admission that Democrats are powerless to force Weiner’s resignation.

Under House rules, a vote to expel Weiner could only come after a full Ethics Committee investigation, which would take months, and thus probably extend the scandal into 2012.

UPDATE: Linked by Donald Douglas at American Power — thanks!

UPDATE II: Linked by Don Surber — thanks!

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