A Georgia cheerleading instructor who admitted to being one of former congressman Anthony Weiner’s sexting friends appeared exclusively on TODAY on Friday, telling Ann Curry that the relationship went beyond sexual innuendos. She also attempted to clear up what she says are false reports about mentioning Weiner’s wife in their interactions.
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“I was flattered,’’ Traci Nobles told Curry about the relationship. “It was more than just sexual. We exchanged music or just talked about life in general.’’
Nobles, who never met Weiner in person, is his latest sexting partner to come forward. She wanted to be clear that Weiner’s pregnant wife, Huma, was not brought up during their numerous online communications, sexual or otherwise. She appeared on TODAY to clear up what she claims are false media reports that alleged she discussed Weiner’s relationship with his wife with him.
“We never really went into personal things as far as that,’’ Nobles said. “There are different reports that ... said I mentioned about his wife. I know it’s bad enough, but that’s not my style. I wouldn’t have done that.”
Curry asked the 35-year-old Athens, Ga., resident what she would like to say to Weiner’s wife.
“I don’t even like to think about that, really, because at the time I didn’t really think about his wife,’’ she said.Video: Weiner sexting partner: ‘I don’t regret it’ (on this page)
Appearing along with two of her lawyers, Jason Slider and John Baker, Nobles discussed a relationship that started with her unabashed public affection for the New York congressman and soon turned into a lurid online communication that included lewd photos, text messages and more.
Relationship heats up
Nobles said things started heating up after she “liked” his Facebook fan page, started following him on Twitter and eventually accepted a friend request from his personal Facebook page. In October 2010, she found him on a Facebook chat and engaged him in a conversation that lasted several hours, thinking it could not be the actual congressman.
However, a multiple-hour chat about politics turned sexual by the final hour, although Nobles still did not believe it was Weiner. The following day, Weiner, 46, suggested a video chat to prove it was him, and the two chatted over Skype that night as the flustered Nobles realized it was really the congressman.
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Their salacious interactions covered everything from sex and Weiner’s wife discovering his online dalliances to campaign strategy, finance and Democratic and Republican politics. Weiner also sent multiple explicit photos of his penis to Nobles via email and numerous sexual text messages in which he often refers to his penis in the third person.
He even sent some of the texts from public settings, like press conferences, his office and television appearances.Video: Rep. Weiner quits amid sexting scandal
The relationship continued from there, and Nobles said most of the chats took place via Facebook or text message and occasionally by Skype. Their last Facebook chat occurred on May 20.
It was part of an avalanche of online correspondence with numerous women that culminated in Weiner’s resignation on Thursday after discussions with his wife and advisers. The three-week scandal had high-ranking Democrats calling for him to step down and other colleagues disappointed at the fall of a politician who was once thought to potentially be a future mayor of New York City. Weiner announced his resignation at a four-minute news conference while enduring some hecklers calling him a “pervert.’’ His pregnant wife of 11 months did not attend the news conference.Story: Ex-porn actress says Weiner asked her to lie
‘I don’t regret it’
As for Nobles’ role in Weiner’s downfall, the self-proclaimed progressive would not take it back.
“It is what it is,’’ she said. “There’s nothing I could do about it at this point. I don’t regret it. It changed me in some way or made me who I am today, so I don’t really regret anything,” adding, “It was mutual. I’m not a victim.’’
A reporter from the Las Vegas Sun had read some of Nobles’ comments on Weiner’s public page and contacted her to inquire if she was one of the women with whom Weiner had an online relationship. She admitted that was true.Carrey hijacks TODAY, weighs in on Weiner
In all, her sexting correspondence with Weiner amounted to approximately 292 files and 359 megabytes of data, all of which she has in her possession. Buried in that mountain is the infamous picture of Weiner in his gray boxer shorts that was posted on Twitter and was initially claimed by Weiner to be the work of a hacker before he admitted it was sent to a 21-year-old via the social networking site.
Despite the public and sexual nature of her interactions with Weiner, Nobles said she will still be teaching summer cheerleading classes for the Young Women’s Christian Organization and still has her job working with elementary and middle school children.
“They still want me to be there as far as the executive director goes,’’ Nobles said.
She also apologized to friends and family for all of the attention the scandal has brought.
“It’s been a little crazy for them,’’ Nobles said. “I never imagined it would involve everybody.’’