Rep. Anthony Weiner has informed friends that he's stepping down from Congress, the New York Times reported Thursday morning.
Multiple news outlets report that Weiner will publicly announce his decision at a press conference Thursday. NBC reported just before the news broke that Weiner's staff members appeared to be packing up Weiner's office this morning. NBC's Alex Moe reports that two staff members and two interns left the office with their belongings, turned off the lights and locked the door.
Weiner's move was widely expected in the face of increasing pressure from colleagues as well as the public amid a growing scandal over the New York Democrat's lewd online communications with multiple women.
Weiner had previously indicated that he wished to speak with his pregnant wife Huma Abedin before deciding on his political future. Abedin returned to Washington yesterday following a trip to Africa with her boss Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
House Democrats today were scheduled to meet to discuss potential next steps to punish the New York congressman, including possibly stripping him of his committee assignments (he currently sits on the powerful House Energy and Commerce as well as the Judiciary committee), and expelling him from the Democratic caucus.
The scandal, which first broke three weeks ago continued to deepen this week.
Just yesterday, porn star Ginger Lee held a press conference to announce that the congressman had asked her to lie about their online communications. "I think that Anthony Weiner should resign because he lied to the public and the press for more than a week," Lee said.
Weiner was asked about his Twitter communications with Lee back when the scandal broke, telling CNN's Wolf Blitzer that Lee probably received "pro-forma" messages from his account and that was all.
Lee claims Weiner sent her specific messages about his "package."
Lee hired celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred to make her case to a national audience and multiple news outlets report that an Atlanta strip club was already using the scandal to promote her appearance at their venue Wednesday night.
Source : Yahoo news