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TODAY   |  May 23, 2013

The art of the political comeback

Former New York Rep. Anthony Weiner, who recently announced his candidacy for New York City mayor, is just the latest in a long line of disgraced politicians to attempt comebacks. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

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>>> the political comeback in the wake of disgraced former congressman anthony weiner 's decision to run for mayor of new york city . andrea mitchell is in washington with that story. good morning to you.

>> good morning, savannah. anthony weiner joins a long list of political figures who have attempted comebacks, most successful, but none with a personal scandal quite like his.

>> i will fight for you every single day.

>> two years after resigning his house seat in disgrace for posting sexually suggestive pictures of himself on twitter, anthony weiner is now hoping new yorkers will give him a second chance as mayor. kicking off his campaign with a video featuring his wife and child.

>> look, i made big mistakes and let a lot of people down, but i've also learned tough lessons.

>> there will be some people who will not vote for him, i suspect there'll be people willing to give him a hearing and an opportunity to make the case.

>> weiner is just one in a long line of political comeback attempts.

>> people are willing to give a candidate a second chance after a scandal if the scandal has not impeded forever his or her ability to do the job and also if they apologized.

>> how many of you want to change washington, d.c.?

>> reporter: most recently, south carolina republican mark sanford won back his old house seat. only four years after tearfully admitting to lying about an affair with his mistress while he was governor.

>> i did not have sexual relations with that woman. i never told anybody to lie, not a single time. never.

>> famously, president clinton who once called himself the comeback kid survived impeachment and is now a global philanthropist and statesman.

>> i'm deeply sorry i did noit live up to what was expected of me.

>> eliot spitzer tried to make a comeback on cable tv after being forced to resign as new york's governor because of a prostitution scandal .

>> i'm completely responsible.

>> louisiana republican senator david vitter was caught on a d.c. madame's client list in 2007 but still won reelection three years ago. weiner is hoping new york voters are willing to forgive and forget.

>> i hope i get a second chance to work for you.

>> weiner has a big campaign war chest and according to one poll, he could even come in second in a crowded field and there'd be a runoff. but that could all change now that he's actually a candidate and voters have a chance to really take a look at him. and although he's married to hillary clinton 's long time close aide, the clintons have signaled they are not supporting this comeback bid.

>> thank you so much.