You won’t have Weiner to kick around

The nation’s great weenie crisis is over.

New York Democratic U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner announced he was resigning his congressional seat and all its fixtures after a truly 21st century scandal. Weiner, whose name evokes either a hot dog or a man’s weenis, had resisted calls for quitting after he reportedly sent video text of his nether region to different women. But when the going gets rough, the rough get their buns and wieners out of Dodge before they are too old to spread the mustard.

Seriously, this is one of those incidents where stupidity begets more stupidity. And it doesn’t help when you are a loud mouth New Yorker who isn’t afraid to speak ill of his own.

Democratic colleagues were not particularly enamored with Weiner in the beginning. You likewise can’t really blame Republicans for getting a freebie by saying that Weiner should beat it, no pun intended.

However, Weiner could probably have won another election due to steadfast support in his congressional district. One thinks the lawmaker might have done a good job not only speaking his mind, which was unfortunately more liberal-minded than many of his fellow Democrats, but in the area of constituent services. I have no proof as to the latter, but usually when congressional members have broad support despite a long and shining legacy of producing little legislation, it is usually because the lawmaker helps people who have problems with the federal government. My best example of this phenomenon is the late Rep. “Good Time” Charlie Wilson.

The liberal East Texas Democrat — my state lawmaker and congressman for a number of years — would after his retirement be known for his secret war on the Soviets in Afghanistan as portrayed in the book and movie “Charlie Wilson’s War.” Wilson came by his nickname “Good Time Charlie” honestly, well, honestly as one can as a politician.

Wilson endured scandals that included allegations of drunk driving, Hoovering cocaine, kiting checks and squiring around world-class beauty queens on U.S. government planes to destinations near and far. But the little old blue-haired ladies in his district flocked to the Senior Centers too see him and give him a hug whenever Charlie visited his district in a monstrous recreational vehicle. Many of the fellows, today probably Tea Partiers, lived vicariously through Charlie. The reason for such popularity and why he kept getting elected for decades was his slogan: “Taking care of the home folks.” And taking care he did.

Yes, I’ve written about Charlie before and I probably will again. But the “services” in the phrase “constituent services” is what makes the difference between a Tom DeLay and a Charlie Wilson. Plus, Charlie was never sentenced to prison.

I think the case of Anthony Weiner was as much about his own party’s indignancies because they didn’t particularly like him than any great offense to the public at large or the Grand Old Party at small. I think it is too bad Weiner resigned over something as piddling as this.