- (Photo: CNN Video)
New York mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner confronted a heckler who called him a "scumbag" and noted that he is "married to an Arab" inside a bakery on Wednesday during a campaign stop.
"What rabbi told you that you were my judge?" Weiner responded to the man inside a bakery in Brooklyn's Borough Park.
"You want to believe you're superior. But you're not. Where do you get the morality to judge me? Do you know who judges me? Not you. You don't get to judge me because you have shown no sign you are superior to me, and you are not my God."
The man, identified as Saul Kessler by Reuters, was referring to Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin an aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was born in Michigan, but has a Pakistani mother and spent time living in Saudi Arabia.
The exchange occurred at a campaign stop for Weiner, who is trying to rebuild his image following a high profile sexting scandal that threatened his political career, ahead of the NY Mayoral elections in November 2013.
A poll in August found that most NYC voters have an unfavorable opinion of Weiner, with a Siena College survey reporting that the former congressman holds 80 percent unfavorability.
"It's a question of whether scandal produces a sense of shame in the supporter," C. David Corbin, professor of politics at the King's College in New York City, shared in an earlier inteview with the The Christian Post.
"There seems to be a line of public ridicule, and once you go beyond it, there's nothing you can do to overcome the opposition," Corbin said.
CNN noted that the argument between Weiner and the man went on for a number of minutes, after which Weiner left the bakery.
"He has every right to (challenge me). It's America," the mayoral candidate said after the confrontation. Later on Wednesday, he described the situation as "just some enthusiastic exchange with a voter."
"Look, you're allowed to say stuff to me," Weiner added. "But if you're going to say vile things about me and my family, you should expect that I'm going to go back at you.
"Hecklers don't get a chance to necessarily get the last word if they cross the line."
For his own part, Kesslar, a 51-year-old real estate manager, explained to CNN why he had brought up Weiner's wife:
"It's just a certain feeling I have as a Jew," the man said. "And my attitude is that – not all Arabs – but, in general, ... they want to kill every Jew." He added, however, that he "probably shouldn't have said" what he did, and regretted calling Weiner a "scumbag."