NEW YORK (CBS 2) — One notable no-show to Sunday’s Celebrate Israel Parade on Fifth Avenue was Congressman Anthony Weiner, whose absence apparently did not sit will with a top U.S. senator.
The New York representative’s Twitter scandal was the talk of the day, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
It’s one of the biggest parades in New York City, full of flags, floats, Jewish pride, and politicians who attend to show their solidarity with the state of Israel.
However, Congressman Anthony Weiner, who has been marching in the parade since he arrived on the New York political scene as a city councilman in 1992, was marked absent.
The lewd photo sent from Weiner’s Twitter account appeared to keep him in hiding, which didn’t sit well with New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg.
“I’d like to see him here,” Sen. Lautenberg said. “He cares about Israel, very active in the Jewish community, and he ought to be here.”
Before the parade, there was the annual Metropolitan Council of Jewish Poverty legislative breakfast, where the so-called “Weinergate” controversy was a looming topic.
Weiner had attended the breakfast every year for the last two decades, and on Friday he had said he would attend – but on Sunday, he was a no-show.
Even though Weiner ducked the breakfast, his ears must have been burning with lingering questions about the controversy. Some are unsatisfied with the congressman’s assertion that he can’t say “with certitude” that the Twitter picture of bulging boxer briefs was him or not.
“It’s becoming a huge circus, and I think it’s unfortunate that the congressman didn’t deal with this quickly,” former New York City Comptroller William Thompson Jr. said.
“Everywhere I go, people are talking about his – it’s amazing,” City Councilman Domenic Recchia Jr. said. “The big question people are having, and I think he has to explain, is why he just won’t report this.”
Many of Weiner’s colleagues in Congress were also ducking the issue Sunday.
“I’m not here to pass judgement,” Rep. Charles Rangel said. “I’m not trained in that area.”
“I know what you want to ask me, and I don’t want to answer,” Rep. Carolyn Maloney said.
“I have no comment,” Rep. Jerrold Nadler said.
Back at the parade, Governor Andrew Cuomo and other local lawmakers were happy to show solidarity with Israel, while more than just Rep. Weiner’s congressional colleagues seemed to distance themselves fro the scandal.
Congressman Weiner’s office did not respond to questions about why he skipped Sunday’s parade.