Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin announced Monday she is separating from husband and former Congressman Anthony Weiner, after a new report that he had sent explicit photos to a woman multiple times over the last 19 months.
"After long and painful consideration and work on my marriage, I have made the decision to separate from my husband," Abedin said in a statement. “Anthony and I remain devoted to doing what is best for our son, who is the light of our life. During this difficult time, I ask for respect for our privacy."
A New York Post report published late Sunday claimed Weiner sent pictures to the unidentified woman, and described his sexual fantasies and masturbation in messages to her, calling her "literally a fantasy chick."
One of the photos Weiner sent the woman showed his underwear-clad crotch as his son Jordan slept next to him in bed.
Weiner, 51, took his Twitter account down Monday after admitting to the Post that he and the woman "have been friends for some time." He added that their conversations were "private ... and were always appropriate."
Weiner's latest correspondent, who described herself to the Post as a supporter of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and the National Rifle Association, has two adult children and lives with a boyfriend who routinely travels for work.
Weiner spent 12 years in the House of Representatives before resigning in June 2011 after posting an explicit image of himself on his Twitter account. At the time, he admitted that he had "exchanged messages and photos of an explicit nature with about six women" over the previous three years.
With Abedin's public support, Weiner entered the New York City mayoral race in 2013. However, his campaign collapsed when a second woman, Sydney Leathers, came forward to claim Weiner had sent her more explicit photos while using the alias "Carlos Danger." Weiner finished fifth in the Democratic primary with just five percent of the vote.
In a recent interview with Vogue, Abedin talked about how her Muslim faith, and a network of friends and colleagues, helped her through the scandals.
Weiner, meanwhile, recently sidestepped a reporter's question when asked by The New York Times Magazine whether he was still engaging in sexting.
"I'm not going to go down the path of talking about any of that," Weiner reportedly said.
After Abedin announced her separation, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump weighed in on the drama Monday afternoon.
"Huma is making a very wise decision. I know Anthony Weiner well, and she will be far better off without him," Trump said.
"I only worry for the country in that Hillary Clinton was careless and negligent in allowing Weiner to have such close proximity to highly classified information. Who knows what he learned and who he told? It's just another example of Hillary Clinton's bad judgment. It is possible that our country and its security have been greatly compromised by this,” he said.