February to March: Weiner and Abedin give interviews to the New York Times Magazine for a profile. Weiner says he has changed, though some people “just don’t have room for a second narrative about me.” But he also implies that he’s still in counseling: “Now I start sentences with, ‘My therapist says …’ ”
April 11: On this day, according to Anonymous, Weiner “reactivated his Facebook and asked me what I thought of” the Times Magazine story. An undated screen shot shows a Facebook message from “Anthony Weiner” (with a photo of him and Abedin) asking, “are we ok? i turned my fb back on after the story to field the onslaught and to hear the feedback. well, my brother emailed me asking about you and whether i pissed you off. … ill call back, but just checking.”
April 24: Weiner tells WABC, “The two years that I’ve had to step back have been devoted to basically two foundational things: one, being a much better husband, repairing the relationship with my wife, re-earning her trust, repairing our marriage. And two, being a good father.” In an interview with WNBC, he is asked: “Since you resigned, have you been in touch with any of the women that you were in touch with before you resigned?” He answers: “Some of them have reached out to me to say things that I don’t … You know, their lives have been put upside down as well. Some of them have come forward willingly, but some of them haven’t, and they’ve got drawn into things that, frankly, they didn’t deserve. And that’s it. But we haven’t stayed in touch or anything like that.” The interviewer asks: “You haven’t reinitiated conversations?” Weiner replies: “Definitely not, definitely not. I mean, I’ve basically said, ‘I thank you,’ or ‘I’m sorry.’ … If they’ve reached out to me, I’ve apologized, and we’ve left it at that.”
July 23: The Dirty publishes the screen shots from Anonymous. At a press conference, Weiner responds: “Some of the things that have been posted today are true, and some are not … Some of these things happened before my resignation. Some of them happened after. But the fact is that that was also the time that my wife and I were working through some things in our marriage. I’m glad these things are behind us.” Abedin concurs: “Anthony’s made some horrible mistakes, both before he resigned from Congress and after. … We discussed all of this before Anthony decided to run for mayor.” A reporter asks: “When was the last … text or Facebook”? Weiner replies: “I can’t say exactly. Sometime last summer, I think.” He affirms that it was after the People interview. Abedin smiles and nods.
If this timeline is accurate, what does it tell us? At least four things. First, Weiner and Abedin began to orchestrate Weiner’s return to politics months before he began sexting with Anonymous. During these preparations, in early 2012, Weiner seems to have still been processing his understanding of what he had done.