All Quiet on the Twitter Front
Actor Alec Baldwin surprised the country last night by going on a profanity-laced Twitter rant against a Daily Mail reporter, which included physical threats and homophobic insults like “you toxic little queen.”
But given 14 hours to respond, the man Mr. Baldwin has endorsed in the mayor’s race, Bill de Blasio, has had nothing to offer but radio silence. Indeed, the city’s public advocate declined to comment on Mr. Baldwin–who is set to host a widely-touted fund-raising dinner on Mr. de Blasio’s behalf–in-person earlier today.
Blast From The Past
After a policy-heavy press conference this morning, Anthony Weiner did what mayoral candidates in this race rarely do: signed an autograph.
Mr. Weiner had wrapped up an event in the Sheepshead Bay neighborhood of Brooklyn–where he stood outside a kosher supermarket touting his plan to allow small business owners to contest fines on their blocks using mobile vans–when a woman, bashful at first, approached the former congressman to ask for an autograph.
Count Ginger Lee, a stripper who was intimately involved in the sexting scandal that led to former Congressman Anthony Weiner’s downfall, among his detractors as he now seeks the top job in City Hall.
“I do not think Anthony Weiner should run for Mayor of New York City because even now, nearly two years after this story broke, there are still details relating to other women that have not been exposed,” Ms. Lee said in a statement sent to Politicker. “Each time Anthony Weiner deflects or obfuscates these details, my life and perhaps the lives of other women are made more difficult by the increased attention from the media.”
Former Congressman Anthony Weiner’s media marathon today was even more expansive than it initially appeared, spanning at least six local channels as he seeks to repair his tarnished brand in the wake of an infamous Twitter scandal that forced his exit from Congress two years ago. In several of the interviews, Mr. Weiner hinted that additional lewd photographs or stories about his digital sex life could emerge, but he perhaps went the furthest on the topic with FOX 5′s Ti-Hua Chang.
“I’m sure that stuff is going to come out,” he answered when asked if anything “salacious” may still arrive. “Some of it may be true, some of it not … But I’m certainly not going to do anything more to bring anything up. But I know that people are digging around all the time.”
Mr. Weiner, who’s exploring a campaign for mayor, further said that some of women he contacted online may decide to sell their stories for attention, but suggested the press could simply ignore them going forward.
Insert Pun Here
State Senator Greg Ball has been on a bit of a media tour since he tweeted his support for torturing the Boston Marathon terror suspect in the aftermath of his arrest, and he doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. To wit, his round of interviews took him to at least two news shows yesterday evening, Capital Tonight and Piers Morgan Live, where he put his argument into rather direct form.
“All I can tell you is what I would do as an American. If we saw what just happened where we had men, women and children–a child–killed,” he said at one point, for example. “I can tell you that as Greg Ball, if I felt that torture–whether it be making them listen to music at night, or using a baseball bat–would save one innocent life, including that of a child, I would use it. But I’m just speaking for Greg Ball.”
Former Congressman Anthony Weiner, who infamously sent lewd photos from his @RepWeiner Twitter account two years ago–ultimately leading to his resignation–has signed back up on the social media service. He’s now under the handle @AnthonyWeiner.
At his press conference this afternoon, Mayor Michael Bloomberg was asked about his thoughts on the “Twitter universe” in light of a recent scandal involving an EMS lieutenant who was suspended after the New York Post revealed a series of racist statements he made on the social media site. Mayor Bloomberg described it as evidence people need to be far more careful about what they post online and suggested he’d even warned one of his fellow media moguls, Rupert Murdoch, to stay away from Twitter.
“Everything you send out is going to be retweeted, re-Facebooked, re this, re that and … if you write it down, some day somebody’s going to FOIL it or get it based on a judge’s order,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “You should write down, number one, only things you believe and, number two, then think about how it would look if somebody else sees it.”
After traveling to Albany last month to support State Senator Jeff Klein’s push to ban the nutritional supplement DMAA, baseball great, reality television star, MMA fighter, admitted steroid user, author and social media enthusiast Jose Canseco’s latest cause seems to be the number of deaths linked to sugary drinks. After Mr. Canseco took to Twitter this evening to urge the president to “declare war on sugar,” Politicker asked whether he’d be interested in teaming up with a man who is perhaps the nation’s most high-profile anti-sugar crusader–Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Prior to launching his mayoral bid, Republican former MTA chairman Joe Lhota was an extremely prolific Twitter user. Since hitting the campaign trail, Mr. Lhota has made far fewer posts on the social media site and stopped tweeting the witticisms he was previously known for. When Politicker saw Mr. Lhota at lunch yesterday, we asked him why he reduced his Twitter presence. Mr. Lhota attributed his lower Twitter profile to instructions from his campaign press team, specifically, his spokeswoman Susan Del Percio.
“I eventually will get back. You know I get handled by my press people,” said Mr. Lhota. “Susan, she threatened me, so I have to be careful.”
Earlier today, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez died after an extended bout with cancer. Needless to say, Mr. Chávez, a prominent opponent of United States foreign policy whose critics accused him of dictator-style thuggery at home, will not be fondly remembered in many corners of American politics.
But in the Bronx, at least, Mr. Chávez has a booster in the form of veteran Congressman José Serrano, who responded to the news by praising the Venezuelan leader’s anti-poverty efforts.