Anthony Weiner’s stubborn refusal to stay in the New York City mayoral race and not slink away into the shadows could have national political implications because of a little known fact: His wife Huma Abedin leads a Hillary Clinton “transition team” that could form the nucleus of her presidential campaign.
If Abedin continues her “stand by your man” routine and Weiner remains in the race, the Hillary Clinton may have to decide whether to divorce herself from someone who for years has been perhaps her most trusted aide.
Signals are already being sent. In a New York Post piece, the Clintons are described as angry not just at Weiner, but at Abedin too:
“The Clintons are upset with the comparisons that the Weiners seem to be encouraging — that Huma is ‘standing by her man’ the way Hillary did with Bill, which is not what she in fact did,’’ said a top state Democrat.
The very last thing Hillary would need as the presidential campaign begins to ramp up is a person beside her who perpetually reminds voters of the ignominious sex scandal that nearly brought down Bill Clinton.
It would be a stunning exercise in hypocrisy for the former first lady – who stood by Bill after he had sullied the presidency by engaging in sexual activity in the Oval Office with an intern – to sideline Abedin for doing something similar for her husband.
Bill and Hillary arguably pioneered the art of political resurrection from stigma of smutty, psychopathic behavior. But with the presidency at stake, the Clintons have long shown they’ll do what it takes to win.