Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


The Camera Does Not Lie: A Content Analysis of Anthony Weiner's Official House Photo Album

Bookmark and Share

The camera catches Weiner without a suit jacket 50 percent of the time, his shirt sleeves rolled up in 37 percent of photos, and 23 percent of snapshots cannot confirm the congressman is wearing trousers

anthonyweiner02.jpgWhile the salacious behavior of politicians is always serious business in D.C., the news business of covering these stories sometimes seems a little too serious.

The latest example involves the case of Democratic New York U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner of the Empire State's 9th Congressional District, who made the media rounds earlier this week in an attempted damage control operation to distance his culpability from a racy photo sent from his Twitter account to a young woman in Washington State.

One of the news operations to interview Weiner on Wednesday was CNN, with Wolf Blitzer getting the honors.

Later that day CNN's Jessica Yellin interviewed Blitzer on the interview Blitzer himself had conducted of Representative Weiner.

When asked about the Weiner interview, Blitzer puffed:

"We asked him all the tough questions. Not easy, as you know, Jessica, for a reporter to ask those kinds of questions."

One of the 'tough questions' posed by Blitzer that Rep. Weiner was unable or refused to definitively answer was as follows:

"Well we just want to resolve it, once and for all. You would know if this is your underpants?"

Since questions about Weiner and his clothing have become such a big national story, Smart Politics decided to become proactive and delve into the congressman's past photographic record in case additional questions about his alleged appearances on camera become an issue.

As such, Smart Politics content analyzed each of the 82 photographs the congressman has posted to the photo gallery on his official U.S. House website dating back eight years to 2003 and thoroughly examined the wardrobe, or at times lack thereof, that Representative Weiner displayed for the camera.

While there are no underpants visible in any of the nearly seven dozen photographs featuring the congressman, perhaps the most startling revelation is that there is evidence of Weiner wearing pants in just 77 percent of the snapshots.

Indeed, the congressman is visibly wearing trousers in just 63 of the 82 photos, with his pants status unclear in another 19, such as when he gave a demonstration in December 2008 to discuss "harmful packaging" while wearing a long dark overcoat.

The camera lens could also not confirm whether or not Weiner was wearing any pants while standing at a strategically-placed podium as he discussed the Senate passage of the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act in November 2010.

But is there any hard photographic evidence of Representative Weiner that suggests he might be prone to having his picture taken while dressed unprofessionally, as is alleged in the infamous Twitter photo?

On the one hand, in his favor, the congressman is almost always photographed wearing a tie - in 90 percent of the photos in his gallery (74 of 82). (With one of the few exceptions taking place in a St. Patrick's Day parade in 2008 when he was captured wearing a
green necklace in its place).

Even so, Weiner is seen wearing a suit jacket in just half of these public appearances - or 41 of the 82 photographs, which seems on the low side for what one might expect from a distinguished member of the nation's lower legislative chamber.

But the photographic record of Weiner's attire takes a hard left turn to the questionable when looking more closely at his shirts - in particular, his shirt sleeves.

Unlike his former colleague, Republican Christopher Lee, who was caught on camera shirtless in a Craig's List photo, Weiner is seen wearing a shirt in 99 percent of the photos on his website (with only one unclear shot in which the congressman is wearing a zipped up jacket while patrolling New York City Harbor with the US Coast Guard back in March 2008).

However, Weiner definitely has a history of being photographed showing a little extra skin, as he is caught with his shirt sleeves rolled up - sometimes all the way north to his elbows - in 37 percent of the photographs posted on his site.

For example, Weiner exposes a good portion of his bare arms while announcing homeland security grants for New York area Jewish institutions in July of last year, when calling for caregiver tax relief in June 2008, and when fighting to keep a Social Security office open last month to name just a few instances.

Of course, the recently married Weiner is not simply being scrutinized for the racy photo itself, but for allegedly sending it to a young female college student in Seattle.

However, photographic evidence from Weiner's photo gallery does not back allegations of him cavorting with younger women.

A content analysis of the 82 photographs finds that men outnumber women by over a 3 to 1 margin of adults appearing in the foreground or background in Weiner's photos - 192 men to just 57 women, with most of the latter group being middle to older age.

An additional 45 individuals appearing in the snapshots from Weiner's House photo gallery were children.

While it is unclear how Weiner's scandal will play out in the media, the overall photographic story told by his own website's photo gallery suggests his sometimes too-cool-for-school attire is not doing him any favors.

In the future, the congressman might be advised to remember to always roll down his shirt sleeves, put on a suit jacket, and make sure wide angle lenses are used by his staffers to reassure his constituents and the leering media that he is indeed always wearing pants during his public appearances.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: The Quotable Weiner: A Second Look
Next post: Rick Santorum, Catholicism, and the 2012 Republican Ticket

1 Comment


  • why can't progressives bring themselves to just throw "the trash out"..yesterday, anthony "oscar mayer" weiner finally resigned...did he cut a deal for a new job somewhere? weiner is no better than a "dirty old man" in the park who exposes himself to females or boys...the nly difference is weiner used the computer and the "dirty old man" wears a raincoat...he is a pervert and desrve the shame that he has received...it isn't a "family matter" alone...it is a reflection of our out of control ruling parties, both progressives and republicans...it is time to clean house..it is time to stop the spending...and it is time to stop the wars and bring the troops back.

  • Leave a comment


    Remains of the Data

    Is There a Presidential Drag On Gubernatorial Elections?

    Only five of the 20 presidents to serve since 1900 have seen their party win a majority of gubernatorial elections during their administrations, and only one since JFK.

    Political Crumbs

    Strike Three for Miller-Meeks

    Iowa Republicans had a banner day on November 4th, picking up both a U.S. Senate seat and one U.S. House seat, but Mariannette Miller-Meeks' defeat in her third attempt to oust Democrat Dave Loebsack in the 2nd CD means the GOP will not have a monopoly on the state's congressional delegation in the 114th Congress. The loss by Miller-Meeks (following up her defeats in 2008 and 2010) means major party nominees who lost their first two Iowa U.S. House races are now 0 for 10 the third time around in Iowa history. Miller-Meeks joins Democrat William Leffingwell (1858, 1868, 1870), Democrat Anthony Van Wagenen (1894, 1912 (special), 1912), Democrat James Murtagh (1906, 1914, 1916), Democrat Clair Williams (1944, 1946, 1952), Democrat Steven Carter (1948, 1950, 1956), Republican Don Mahon (1966, 1968, 1970), Republican Tom Riley (1968, 1974, 1976), Democrat Eric Tabor (1986, 1988, 1990), and Democrat Bill Gluba (1982, 1988, 2004) on the Hawkeye State's Three Strikes list.


    Larry Pressler Wins the Silver

    Larry Pressler may have fallen short in his long-shot, underfunded, and understaffed bid to return to the nation's upper legislative chamber, but he did end up notching the best showing for a non-major party South Dakota U.S. Senate candidate in more than 90 years. Pressler won 17.1 percent of the vote which is the best showing for an independent or third party U.S. Senate candidate in the state since 1920 when non-partisan candidate Tom Ayres won 24.1 percent in a race won by Republican Peter Norbeck. Overall, Pressler's 17.1 percent is good for the second best mark for a non-major party candidate across the 35 U.S. Senate contests in South Dakota history. Independent and third party candidates have appeared on the South Dakota U.S. Senate ballot just 25 times over the last century and only three have reached double digits: Pressler in 2014 and Ayres in 1920 and 1924 (12.1 percent). Pressler's defeat means he won't become the oldest candidate elected to the chamber in South Dakota history nor notch the record for the longest gap in service in the direct election era.


    more POLITICAL CRUMBS

    Humphrey School Sites
    CSPG
    Humphrey New Media Hub

    Issues />

<div id=
    Abortion
    Afghanistan
    Budget and taxes
    Campaign finances
    Crime and punishment
    Economy and jobs
    Education
    Energy
    Environment
    Foreign affairs
    Gender
    Health
    Housing
    Ideology
    Immigration
    Iraq
    Media
    Military
    Partisanship
    Race and ethnicity
    Reapportionment
    Redistricting
    Religion
    Sexuality
    Sports
    Terrorism
    Third parties
    Transportation
    Voting