Weiner’s lawyers cite ‘remarkable progress’ in probation request
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Lawyers for former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) argue that the ex-lawmaker deserves probation, citing "remarkable progress" made on the problems leading to his sexual misconduct.

Court filings reported by The New York Times on Thursday show Weiner's lawyers called his conduct in a teenage sexting case "inexcusable" and that he responded to an underaged girl's messages in 2016 as a "weak man at the bottom of a self-destructive spiral."

He responded "with an addict’s self-serving delusion that the communications were all just internet fantasy — willfully ignoring that there was a young person at the other end of the connection, hundreds of miles away, who could be damaged by these exchanges through the ether," his lawyers wrote in court filings.

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In a separate letter to the judge, Weiner expressed his "profound regret" for his actions.

"My continued acting out over years crushed the aspirations of my wife and ruined our marriage,” Weiner wrote. Weiner resigned from Congress in 2011, after the first of several sexting scandals came to light — the first with an adult woman through his Twitter account.

His son “will forever have to answer questions about the public and private failings of his father," Weiner acknowledged in the letter.

But according to his attorneys, Weiner was set up. The girl at the center of the controversy was seeking “somehow to influence the U.S. presidential election, in addition to securing personal profit,” his lawyers argue, and the girl is now seeking a book deal related to her experience. His lawyers did not argue that this justified Weiner's behavior.

A report published in May in WhoWhatWhy seemingly confirmed that the girl was hoping to swing the election in favor of President Trump. Weiner is married to Huma Abedin, longtime aide and confidante to Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGrassley blasts Democrats over unwillingness to probe Clinton GOP lawmakers cite new allegations of political bias in FBI Top intel Dem: Trump Jr. refused to answer questions about Trump Tower discussions with father MORE. They are currently in the midst of divorce proceedings.

“Seeing that Weiner is both a repeat offender — his sexting addiction cost him his job in Congress as well as a shot at becoming mayor of New York — and associated with one of the most important people in Clinton’s inner circle, it is conceivable that this was a set-up from the beginning, with the objective of embarrassing the Clinton campaign,” according to the WhoWhatWhy report.

Weiner pleaded guilty to one charge of transmitting obscene material to a minor in May. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.