Democrats have real short memories. In 2011, Anthony Weiner gets himself in trouble for texting photographs of himself to women who are not his wife. He then, in an effort to not have his wife find out about his sexting infidelity, lied to the media about whether the inappropriate photographs were him.
Now, most of his democratic colleagues have publically advised him to resign, including Democratic Congresswoman from Florida Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who also chairs of the DNC.
After Wasserman Schultz observed Weiner should resign, Politico's Mike Allen asked the congresswoman whether under the "Weiner standard" Bill Clinton should have resigned when details of his lies about the affair with Monica Lewinsky, a White House intern, came to light. Allen then suggested that compared to Clinton, perhaps Weiner has been judged too harshly.
Wasserman Schultz responded that she didn't think Weiner was being unfairly treated relative to Clinton. According to Wasserman Schultz, it all comes down to Weiner's effectiveness:
I think that particularly because there was an effort to not tell the truth, I think that because he has engaged in some what I think is some very inappropriate conduct that has distracted his ability to do his job and distracted from almost all of our ability to do our jobs and make sure that we can effectively serve our constituents, I think that the best conclusion is that he should focus on addressing his problems and resign from the House.
What did she say? Remember, Wasserman Schultz isn't some armchair quarterback (like me) trying to provide some half baked argument. Wasserman Schultz is a congresswoman and the Chair of the DNC and she's distinguishing Weiner from Clinton because in Weiner's case there was "an effort not to tell the truth."
I'm not sure where Wasserman Schultz was in 1998, but I recall President Bill Clinton LYING UNDER OATH. Which is a big deal. It's a big deal if you're baseball player- ask Barry Bonds- but it's something should absolutely NOT be done when you're the President of the United States. The President of the United States lying under oath is much different from Representative Tony Weiner lying to reporters about whether a photograph of some guy's junk is him. Yes, Weiner shouldn't have lied, but at least he didn't lecture us on the definition of the word "is." Remember a sitting president- Clinton- said: "it depends upon what the meaning of 'is' is..." to defend himself with respect to having sex with an intern.
So, yes, Wasserman Schultz is very much off her rocker when distinguishing Weiner from Clinton because of Weiner's "effort not to tell the truth." A President having to use mental gymnastics to redefine the word "is" can be characterized as an effort not to tell the truth.
But the other reason Wasserman Schultz cites as why Weiner should resign is even further out in left field: that Weiner and the rest of Congress are distracted from work.
Again, I'm not sure what Wasserman Schultz was smoking to miss 1998 and 1999, but those two years forever redefined a Congress and President being distracted from doing their jobs. In 1998, the House of Representatives voted to impeach the President of the United States, which was only done once before (Andrew Johnson, 1868; President Nixon resigned before he could face a vote for impeachment in the House of Representatives) and then the Senate had to act as a jury on Clinton's Articles of Impeachment.
Which is more distracting? A Congress who had to deal with President Clinton's lies under oath- and diddling a White House intern- and subsequent impeachment or a Congress who has chosen to weigh in on Anthony Weiner's relatively lame indiscretions? I'm certain my congressman, Mike Quigley, can focus and do his job whether or not Anthony Weiner is in the chamber- it really can't be that tough. Is Weiner a douchebag? Sure. Now let's get back to running the country.
More embarrassing than Weiner and his escapades for democrats is the reaction of democratic leadership- Wasserman Schultz especially. Wasserman Schultz makes Sarah Palin look like Albert Einstein. Watching the video of her comments makes clear that she should resign her position of leadership with the DNC before Weiner resigns his seat in the House. (See video here http://bcove.me/q8rd3qzn)
Anthony Weiner must resign because he lied and is a distraction- but Bill Clinton's conduct (including, diddling a subordinate and lying under oath about diddling) was cool in 1998?
Politicians say some dumb stuff- but Wasserman Schultz just won an award.
I think everyone, or at least every Democrat, would be much better off to just shut up, move on and get back to ruining- er, running the country.