Marion Barry is a former mayor of Washington, D.C. and sits on the City Council.(Photo: Lisa Nipp, Gannett)
(USA TODAY) -- Perhaps Eliot Spitzer and Anthony Weiner won't appreciate this, but former Washington mayor Marion Barry says he can "identify" with the New Yorkers as they try again for public office.
In an interview with CNN
, Barry talked about what it takes to rebuild a political life - and he would know.
Barry was the District of Columbia's mayor when he was videotaped by the FBI in 1990 smoking crack cocaine. Barry served six months in prison and won a seat on the D.C. City Council in 1992 -- and then voters put him back into the mayor's job in 1994.
"It takes a lot of courage to come back," Barry told CNN. "It takes a lot of tenacity, a lot of heart to believe more in yourself than people believe in you."
Spitzer, a former New York governor who resigned in 2008 amid a prostitution scandal, shook up the political scene when he announced he's running for New York City comptroller. Weiner, who resigned from Congress in 2011 after a sexting scandal, is running for New York City mayor.