Ambitious Weiner sees media strategy backfire

By BETH FOUHY | June 4, 2011 | 4:00 AM EDT

FILE - In this Jan. 6, 2011 file photo, Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., testifies before the House Rules Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. “Weiner Exposed.” “Weiner’s Pickle.” “Battle of the Bulge.” Those were some of the tabloid headlines lampooning U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner as he struggled to explain how a photo of a man’s crotch had been posted to his Twitter account. The normally media-savvy New York Democrat squandered his chance to make it right with a cringe-inducing TV blitz that raised more questions than it answered..(AP Photo/Harry Hamburg, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — It's been a tough week in the tabloids for Rep. Anthony Weiner, the congressman once thought to be one of the most media-savvy lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

The New York Democrat has been subject to headlines like "Weiner's Pickle" and "Battle of the Bulge."

The pugnacious 46-year-old has become hero to liberals for chiding Republicans on health care and other issues. He's done so by making smart use of cable television and social networking sites like Twitter.

But this past week, the married Weiner couldn't explain how a photo of a man's crotch was posted to his Twitter account. He also couldn't say whether it was a picture of him.

Some observers believe his goal of running for New York City mayor in 2013 could be jeopardized.