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Someone took the Weiner jokes a little too literally.
U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills) said a hacker broke into his Twitter account and sent a photo of a man’s groin to a Seattle college student Friday.
The lewd photo, which depicts a male crotch clad in gray underwear, was sent to 21-year-old Gennette Nicole Cordova — although it was visible to all of Weiner’s roughly 45,000 followers until it was removed shortly afterward.
Weiner has used the social networking site in the past to deliver witty barbs at his political opponents — like his May 18 tweet which read “RT @CapitalTonight: AP: Pete King is considering a presidential run in 2012. #DamnThoseEndofTheWorldPredictionsMayBeRight” — and said that both his Facebook and Twitter accounts were recently hacked.
Weiner played off the incident with lighthearted tweets the next day that read: “Touche Prof Moriarity. More Weiner Jokes for all my guests! #Hacked!” and “Tivo shot. FB hacked. Is my blender gonna attack me next? #TheToasterIsVeryLoyal.”
But Dave Arnold, a spokesman for Weiner said they are seeking legal advice while trying not to blow the issue out of proportion.
“We’ve retained counsel to explore the proper next steps and to advise us on what civil or criminal actions should be taken,” Arnold said in a statement. “This was a prank. We are loath to treat it as more, but we are relying on professional advice.”
Weiner released a statement Monday which said he was focusing on the bipartisan battles in Washington instead of the tawdry tweet.
“At a time when the GOP is playing games with the debt limit, a member of the Supreme Court is refusing to recuse himself from matters he has a financial interest in and middle-class incomes are stagnant, many want to change the subject. I don’t,” the statement said. “This was a prank, and a silly one. I’m focused on my work.”
Cordova issued a statement Sunday to the New York Daily News, which said another user alerted her to the illicit tweet and that this user had harassed her before with regard to the congressman.
The harassment began, she said, after she mentioned “my boyfriend @Rep-Weiner” as a joke in one of her tweets.
But Cordova said in her statement that she believed Weiner was not responsible.
Conservative writers like Dan Riehl disagreed and offered meticulous dissections of Weiner’s tweeting habits and of Weinergate itself to suggest that the married congressman was behind the photo.
Reach reporter Joe Anuta by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 718-260-4566.
©2011 Community Newspaper Group
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