The ongoing scandal surrounding a lewd tweet sent from Rep. Anthony Weiner’s (D-NY) Twitter account took yet another turn for the weird Thursday as alleged e-mails between the person who first noticed the photo and conservative media guru Andrew Breitbart were leaked.
Breitbart first reported the Weiner story Saturday on his site Big Government using a screengrab from the person in question, Twitter user “@patriotusa76,” who lists his name on his account as Dan Wolfe and said he captured the image from Weiner’s feed before it was deleted. Weiner has said his account was hacked and a number of liberal blogs have pointed to Wolfe — who had a history of crudely taunting Weiner online — as a person of interest.
In response, Wolfe has tweeted denials that he hacked Weiner’s account or had anything to do with the publication of the photo.
Breitbart began to raise suspicions on his own Twitter feed about Wolfe’s involvement in the incident in recent days, calling on him to come forward about his role, and is currently linking to a post on his Big Government website that questions whether @patriotusa76 did, in fact, hack Weiner’s account.
With that as background, The Smoking Gun published emails today from Dan Wolfe, AKA “patriotusa76,” at least one of which listed Breitbart as a recipient. In the first email, Wolfe tips off Breitbart to the screengrab as well as key details of the story and promises at the end that “we have more.”
In the second email, Wolfe appears agitated and warns that he will be in big trouble if unspecified details about his role in the incident leak:
I have ALOT of personal problems I didn’t want to go into—but as I become the focus of this I am more and more afraid this will all come out. I want to tell you why I haven’t talked on the phone yet.
I have an en exwife suing me for custody of our 2 kids and for lots of other stuff right now. Her attorneys are after everything I own.
I have an ex girlfriend who has mental problems causing issues for me at work .
My business is suffering as a result.
If my exwife’s attorney’s got a hold of a call recorded with me on it they’d have a field day with that. I want to try to avoid.
She had recorded me twice before. She worked with my exgirlfriend and had two calls recorded.
It has gotten me in a lot of legal trouble.
I am screwed. If this comes out along with everything I’m dealing with here — I don’t know what to do.
In addition to the two published e-mails, TSG described additional correspondences, including one email on May 25, several days before the Twitter incident with Weiner, in which he said he was afraid of Weiner’s connections to the Clinton administration. Weiner is married to Huma Abedin, a close aide to Hillary Clinton.
“Clinton connections—they have people everywhere,” he allegedly wrote. He brought them up again in a later email to Breitbart after the Twitter photo went online.
“I personally don’t fell [sic] comfortable giving him my phone number because of the Clinton ties to this,” Wolfe wrote. “Weiner is sneaky and I don’t need Clinton problems.”
Weiner has claimed that he was hacked, but has said that he is not sure whether or not the photo in question depicts his own body. TPM asked Weiner yesterday whether he was suggesting that someone broke into his account, obtained actual photos, and then Tweeted them in order to embarrass him. He did not dismiss the notion.
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.