Filner goes to rehab: “I must become a better person”
by Joanne Faryon and Brad Racino | inewsource
San Diego Mayor Bob Filner apologized for intimidating and not respecting women and will seek treatment at a counseling clinic for his behavior beginning August 5th for two weeks. He is not resigning.
“My failure to respect women and the intimidating contact I engaged in at times is inexcusable,” Filner said at a news conference Friday.
“It has undermined what I have spent my whole professional life working on — fighting for equality and justice for all people,” he said.
Filner’s comments were brief and he took no questions from reporters.
The announcement comes on the heels of sexual harassment allegations from seven prominent women and calls from his own Democratic Party, locally and nationally, to resign.
inewsource and KPBS first broke the story of sexual harassment allegations against Filner two weeks ago, when one of his staunchest supporters, former city councilmember Donna Frye, exposed the alleged behavior in a letter asking the mayor to resign.
The first woman to come forward and allege systematic abuse was Filner’s communications director, Irene McCormack-Jackson.
McCormack, flanked by famed feminist attorney Gloria Allred, said Filner repeatedly made inappropriate sexual comments to her, including “wouldn’t it be great if you took off your panties and worked without them on.”
Filner also tried to kiss her and put her in the now infamous “Filner headlock,” McCormack said in the lawsuit she has filed against the mayor and the City of San Diego.
The other women include a political consultant and Filner’s former deputy campaign manager back in 2005, a psychologist in the San Diego Unified School District, a retired Navy rear-admiral, a dean at San Diego State University, the head of the Port Tenants Association and a well-known businesswoman.