Although I don’t think what Anthony Weiner is even accused of doing rises to the level of ‘love child while your wife has cancer’, the #Weinergate story reminds me a lot of the post-Beverly Hills Hotel phase of the John Edwards story.
Some people like to apply “Occam’s Razor” or some such test in such a situation, but I have a much easier test. I call it “Would your spouse buy it?”
With John Edwards the test went something like this:
“Hey, honey I know that reporters caught me in the middle of the night leaving the hotel room of a woman and then I hid in the bathroom when they asked me about it – but really, nothing was going on!”
Would the average spouse just let it go right there? No?
Then neither should the average reporter. If ‘benefit of the doubt’ isn’t good enough for the person you’re married to, then it’s not good enough for the practice of journalism. And by not acting as curious as a spouse – usually because of ideological agreement with the subject of inquiry – reporters aren’t doing their jobs.
Let’s apply this to Anthony Weiner…
“Hey, honey – I know that my Twitter account sent a photo of what may look like my hairless legs and possibly my junk to one of the woman who I follow on Twitter. And right, I follow less than 100 people. And yes, this woman who referred to me online as ‘her boyfriend’ and her friend said she has ‘a crush’ on me – and okay, she lives in Seattle and retweeted me saying what time in Seattle I’d be on the Rachael Maddow show. And yes, within 3 hours of me supposedly sending her the photo of my alleged junk I erased all my pictures from my YFrog account and sure, she deleted her Twitter and Facebook accounts.
But I have a simple explanation—I was hacked.
And no, I haven’t given any indication of having filed a police report of any kind about being hacked.
But I was hacked. Here’s some flowers. And a teddy bear.”
Would YOUR spouse buy that one?