Anthony Weiner defends 1991 flier as quoting the New York Times

Updated

This week, New York City mayoral candidate and former Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner offered a new explanation for his controversial 1991 campaign mailer, unearthed by Up With Steve Kornacki earlier this month.

Weiner won his 1991 New York City Council race shortly after violent, racially-charged riots broke out in a neighboring Brooklyn district. It was only after his victory that Weiner fessed up to being behind anonymous mailers sent out to voters in his mostly white district, accusing his opponents—Adele Cohen and Mike Garson—of being linked to the “DAVID DINKINS/JESSE JACKSON COALITION” and their “agenda.”

Weiner did apologize to Cohen, and has since said he regretted the political move, but the issue was raised once again during a candidates’ forum in Staten Island on Monday, Capital New York reports.

“Back in 1991, he was a long-shot candidate in a Jewish district in Brooklyn and he ran a race-baiting campaign that the Times attacked, because he won,” said Weiner’s opponent, Green Party mayoral candidate Tony Gronowicz. “He ran against Adele Cohen, an honorable woman, and said she was a functionary of [Rev. Jesse] Jackson and [ New York City mayor David] Dinkins.”

Reporters Azi Paybarah of Capital New York and Jennifer Fermino of the New York Daily News caught up with Weiner after the event, in which he said the mailer “pointed out some things that were true.”

When asked what was true, Weiner said, “It was just quoting from The New York Times.”

msnbc host Steve Kornacki on Saturday called Weiner’s characterization “grossly misleading.”

“The flyer went out of its way to connect Cohn to two black political leaders—Dinkins and Jackson—but she had never even met Jesse Jackson,” Kornacki said. “He could have connected any number of political figures to it, but he chose to single out two major black political figures. In the wake of a race riot.”

Anthony Weiner defends 1991 flier as quoting the New York Times

Updated