Reporting from Washington — One of the women Rep. Anthony Weiner pursued over the Internet didn’t understand how the married New York congressman could take as many chances as he did by sending compromising photos of himself, ones that clearly identified who he was.
At first, 26-year-old Meagan Broussard “didn’t think it was him. I thought, for sure, why would someone in that position be doing this?”
According to an interview with ABC News, Broussard asked him for proof. Weiner quickly responded by sending her a photo of him holding a piece of paper with the word “me” written on it.
That was followed by more scandalous shots, one that featured Weiner’s bare torso, with photos of him clearly identifiable in the background, including ones with Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, an aide to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and former President Clinton. Finally, he sent her a graphic picture of his private parts.
“I just thought it was risky,” the Texas single mother said. “Real risky.”
That risk would be realized. Broussard, after watching the Weiner scandal play out over last week, was put in touch with conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart, who posted the photos online Monday for the world to see. Breitbart, in turn, referred Broussard to ABC.
Notified of Broussard’s impending interview, Weiner called a news conference in New York in which he admitted having inappropriate online contact with at least six women.
Broussard and Weiner’s byplay started in April. After watching a speech by Weiner online, Broussard wrote a single word on his Facebook page: “hotttt.”
Weiner responded almost immediately, asking Broussard to “friend” him. That way, he could send her private messages. He began messaging her daily. “I didn’t understand why he wanted to talk to me so much,” she told ABC. “It wasn’t like I was chasing him at all.”
They spoke on the phone only once, but their online back-and-forth continued until last week. “It was nothing like a relationship,” she said, although she also sent pictures to Weiner.
Of the disgraced congressman, who maintained Monday that he would not resign his seat but who faces a House ethics probe, Broussard said, “I don’t think he’s a bad guy. I just think he’s got issues. Just like everybody else.