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Anthony Weiner's Campaign Website Featured Pittsburgh Skyline, Not NYC

The website designer, NGP VAN, said "this is our fault"

Thursday, May 23, 2013  |  Updated 10:58 PM EDT
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As Anthony Weiner launched his first day on the trail for New York City mayor Thursday, his campaign scrambled to explain why the homepage of his website featured the Pittsburgh skyline instead of the Big Apple.

After the gaffe was reported Thursday afternoon, the image was changed to a generic skyline and then changed again to a photo collage of city landmarks.

The website designer, NGP VAN, claimed responsibility for the error.

"This is our fault," said VP of Marketing John Brougher. "Our designer got the image from a set of images that included New York City images, but obviously this image was not of New York City, as the Weiner campaign had requested." 

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Before the swap was made, the Roberto Clemente Bridge and Pittsburgh skyline were clearly seen in the campaign website header, as first noted by Richard Lampasone on Twitter.

"I love to be reminded of Pittsburgh every time I visit @anthonyweiner's website and see a huge image of it above the campaign logo," he tweeted.

At right, compare the original campaign header on top with the Google Street View image from Pittsburgh at the bottom.

Weiner, who has sought to portray himself as the champion of the outer boroughs, grew up in Brooklyn and represented parts of Brooklyn and Queens in Congress until he resigned two years ago amid a sexting scandal.

The campaign did not comment beyond the statement from the website designer.

Weiner did not address the gaffe Thursday night at a Democratic candidate forum in the Bronx, ducking questions from reporters and hurrying out into a waiting vehicle after he made his remarks. 

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Earlier in the morning, Weiner made his first campaign stop, greeting commuters at a subway station in Harlem, where he said he knows he has a lot of work to do.

"I have to prove myself," Weiner said. "I want to get things done and solve problems."

Weiner told reporters he was encouraged by the number of people who expressed support for him during his first stop on the trail, which was the same location as his last campaign stop during his 2005 mayoral bid.

He said he knew he had to do more than just ask for endorsements in order to be a competitive candidate. 

In an op-ed for the Daily News Thursday, Weiner wrote one of his primary goals is to help elevate the middle class -- and make it easier to get there -- by taking innovative approaches to issues like health care costs, education and taxes. He said campaigns too often end up with voters choosing among politicians who point fingers at one another rather than the issues.

"We do a disservice to our city when the campaign for the second-toughest job in America becomes a contest of who can say, 'I ain’t the other guy' the loudest or whose goal is to collect the most interest groups," Weiner wrote. "I’m running for mayor this year because I still think we need to do things differently, and I think New Yorkers agree." 

He also acknowledged that some voters may question his ability in the aftermath of the Twitter sexting scandal. He welcomed voters to ask him those questions, and said he hoped they'd give him a second chance.

"I understand that I may not be the perfect messenger," Weiner wrote in the News op-ed. "I have made some big mistakes that I may spend a lot of time apologizing for on the campaign trail. And if some citizens want to ask me questions about my private failings rather than public policy, I understand."

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