Follow the timeline, people. From the New York Post:
The girl’s mother, whose name is being withheld, told The Post Wednesday that Weiner sent nothing obscene — and sent only two brief messages to her daughter about seeing him during an April school trip to the Capitol.
The teen, who idolized Weiner, was “disappointed” in him after his confession.
The mom said she pointedly questioned her daughter about whether Weiner sent her anything obscene, and the girl swore it was all G-rated.
So on Wednesday, the media was told there were only two DMs to Ethel from Weiner. It is not clear whether the mom saw those two DMs — but it is clear that she was relying on her daughter’s word that there were only two messages.
Then, Thursday morning, I published Part 2 of my series, noting the “Tights and cape shit” line (the line that the New York Times has managed to transfer into “Tights and cape” with no expletive). And on Thursday evening, I published Part 3.
The next day, the police knocked on the door, and a Fox reporter was there. And then yesterday (Friday) the New York Times publishes this:
Representative Anthony D. Weiner said on Friday that he exchanged at least five private messages on Twitter this spring with a 17-year-old Delaware girl who became an admirer of his after hearing him speak during a high school trip to Washington.
Five, those of you proficient in math will note, is not two.
Interestingly, an unnamed family member talked to the New York Times and acknowledged that there were five messages. And that family member set forth more details regarding the content of those five messages. The first two sound like the two described in the New York Post article:
The girl’s contact with Mr. Weiner started in early April, after her trip to Washington. The congressman spoke to her school group, and she began following him on Twitter, posting a public message saying how much she liked his speech.
Two days later, Mr. Weiner began following her on Twitter. On her profile, she says she aspires to be president. In a private message he sent to her, he said: “How hip am I talking to a future president.”
Delighted that she had heard directly from a congressman, the girl wrote a public post on her Twitter feed: “talking to Rep Weiner from New York right now! is my life real?”
At the time, a group of conservatives was monitoring Mr. Weiner’s Twitter activity, after noticing that he was sending messages to a pornographic star from Tennessee.
When members of the group saw the girl’s post, suggesting she was engaging in a private conversation with Mr. Weiner, they alerted the congressman that they were watching him. “@RepWeiner new pal is a high school girl. First porn actresses now little girls. Weird.”
According to the girl’s family member, people in the group also copied the girl on some of the messages they sent to him, so she sent Mr. Weiner a private message telling him that she felt she was being harassed. He apologized to her in a private message, and removed her from the list of people he followed on Twitter.
So there are two DMs: 1) the initial follow referencing her profile (which also says she loves marching band, showing he knew she was in high school) and 2) the apology and unfollow when Dan Wolfe and his crew mentioned it.
But then, there were three more — after a Congressman who had unfollowed her because of appearances decided to follow her again . . . almost like a guy who can’t help himself:
The girl responded to the appeal and posted a public message to him: “Don’t forget me. I used to follow you.” On May 16, he began following the girl again, and over the next 10 days they had three private message exchanges, the family member said.
One was about baseball. In another, he replied to a question she had about legislation by jokingly asking for her advice, the family member said. His third message to her was in response to a link she posted to a YouTube video of his giving a speech, with the message: “My true love.”
In a blog post on Tumblr, she later shared the contents of that private message from him. In it, Mr. Weiner appeared to liken himself to a superhero.
“I came back strong,” he wrote. “Large. Tights and cape. …”
The New York Times does not say how it supposedly knows the content of these messages.
That description is coming from an unnamed family member. If it’s the mom, then that means the description of the three messages came from the girl, and not from the mom seeing those messages personally. Because we know from the New York Post that up until Wednesday, when I published my blog posts, the mom was told about only 2 direct messages.
What this means is: if the New York Post story is accurate, the information in the New York Times regarding a) how many messages there were and b) what they said is coming from . . . Ethel.
Maybe Ethel really is telling the truth about there having been only five messages. I’m not saying she’s not. But it is important to understand the ultimate source of the pronouncements you are seeing in the New York Times — a publication that we already know has whitewashed several issues in various different ways (such as wording the “Tights and cape shit” line to remove any reference to the profanity).
The source of the description of the messages’ content is not the reporter having seen the messages. It is not the mom having seen the messages. The description most likely comes from Ethel herself.
There is at least one way to know for sure, of course. Twitter saves direct messages. Someone could subpoena them or get a search warrant for them — or get Rep. Weiner’s permission (or Ethel’s permission) to get them from Twitter. That would be more certain than the “investigation” we have seen so far.
I hasten to add: this is not about the girl. It is horrible that the girl is being placed in this position. She is being placed in this position by Rep. Weiner.