An Old Weiner Story Resurfaces in Brooklyn

It’s not clear who at this point considers Anthony Weiner a candidate for mayor–his official withdrawal from consideration will reportedly come shortly–but someone is still taking him seriously.

At an endorsement meeting of the Kings County Democratic Organization last week at the Thomas Jefferson Democratic Club in Canarsie, this photocopy of an old Post story was given out. The story, from 1991, describes how Weiner sent out a campaign mailer attacking an opponent in a City Council race because “Obviously, she agrees with the Dinkins/Jackson agenda.” Weiner went on to win the race, making him the youngest member ever. (He was 27 at the time.)

The reference to then-mayor David Dinkins and Jesse Jackson, in the context of that era in the city, would have been seen as an undisguised appeal to discomfited white voters in the district.

Outside the event in Canarsie, I ran into Taharka Robinson, a local Democratic operative, who raised the topic of Weiner’s 1991 comments, minutes before picking up a copy of the Post story from the ground and handing it to me. He denied that he was responsible for producing or distributing the copies.

Assemblyman Darryl Towns, who was also at the event, told me afterward that a copy of the story “got into my hands,” but that he couldn’t remember who gave it to him.

“It might have been a district leader,” he said. “But it was not another campaign.”

In the flier, there are brackets around several paragraphs in that story which discuss the mailing “Anthony David Weiner” distributed during his Council campaign. One of Weiner’s opponents in that race was Adele Cohen. The flier does not include the story’s headline, byline, or date. It also does not include the name of any person or organization responsible for its distribution.

Weiner’s campaign declined to comment.

The story doesn’t appear online, and I haven’t been able to find it in the New York Post archives, or in a Lexis Nexis search. But references to the incident do appear in places like this New York Times news story and this New York Times editorial.

Here’s some of the text of the photocopied story:

The last day of campaigning was so fierce that Dinkins – without being asked – denounced the smear campaigns.

The mayor himself seemed to be the target of an unsigned mailing that criticized Brooklyn candidate Adele Cohen for being endorsed by the Majority Coalition, which is said to have ties to Dinkins.

“The Majority Coalition endorsed Adele Cohen,” the mailing reads. “Obviously she agrees with the Dinkins/Jackson agenda. Do you?”

The mailing is unsigned, but when asked, Cohen’s opponent Anthony David Weiner admitted he sent it out. He claimed he didn’t put his name on the piece because “I didn’t want to confuse the messenger with the message.”

“I have no problem with being associated with it,” Weiner said.