But the type of media and social media storm he was in the midst of felt new then. “We didn’t know what we were working with at the time, and I was lying to everyone around me,” he stated.
And after he left public life in 2013, he slipped from compulsion into crime, and the saga broadened from injury to his personal life to the nation’s. In January 2016, he started exchanging specific messages with a 15-year-old lady. After the texts were reported in September 2016, prosecutors seized his laptop computer computer. And then, 11 days earlier than the presidential election, the F.B.I. director, James Comey, wrote a letter to Congress saying that new emails found on Mr. Weiner’s computer had prompted him to reopen the investigation into Mrs. Clinton’s emails.
Weeks later, as Democrats tried to perceive how Donald J. Trump had been elected president, Mr. Weiner got here in for a few of the blame. He was the butterfly who flapped his, er, wings and led to the election of Mr. Trump. Mr. Weiner stated he believes, on reflection, that there have been bigger forces at play in that marketing campaign and that if it hadn’t been the emails, Mr. Trump’s supporters would have seized on one thing else. And certainly, Trump-like figures have been elected all around the world. It wasn’t simply Mr. Weiner.
But his personal skepticism that he was the deadly butterfly “is complicated by the fact that that’s what Hillary thinks,” he stated. (“I wouldn’t call it a net positive,” a spokesman for Mrs. Clinton, Nick Merrill, advised me.)
His life hit backside in 2017, when he was sentenced to 21 months in jail for transferring obscene materials to a minor. He served 15 months in a federal jail in Massachusetts, and three extra in a Bronx midway home. His compulsion destroyed his career and his marriage to a senior aide to Hillary Clinton, Huma Abedin, has left him practically unemployable, and formally labeled a intercourse offender.
Mr. Weiner has spent a lot of the final year running a Brooklyn company known as IceStone, which makes environmentally sustainable counter tops. He put in place a coverage of providing job interviews to previously incarcerated individuals. He’s now within the strategy of stepping down as chief govt, he stated, to strive to flip the company right into a “worker-run cooperative.” He and Ms. Abedin, who nonetheless works for Mrs. Clinton, are finalizing their divorce, however they dwell down the corridor from one another in the identical house constructing. Mr. Weiner is in a 12-step program for intercourse habit, and certainly one of its situations is that he not speak about it. His life, he stated, largely revolves round their 9-year-old son.
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Sometimes individuals inform him he ought to strive to “change the narrative” about himself. But there’s no level. There’s no route again to public life for him. “‘The narrative’ implies you’re telling a story,” he stated. “To what end?” The exception, he stated, is that his agent has shopped a ebook about intercourse habit, which he stated he hoped might assist different individuals in his position.