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San Diego mayor to get counseling

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner spoke during a news conference Friday at San Diego City Hall.

Gregory Bull / Associated Press

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner spoke during a news conference Friday at San Diego City Hall.

SAN DIEGO — Declaring he ‘‘must become a better person,’’ Mayor Bob Filner announced Friday he will undergo two weeks of counseling after a series of women came forward and said the former Democratic congressman made unwanted sexual advances that included touching, kissing, and offensive comments.

‘‘Words alone are not enough,’’ Filner said at a nationally televised news conference. “I am responsible for my conduct and I must take responsibility for my conduct so that such conduct does not ever happen again.’’

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Filner said he will receive twice-a-day briefings about city operations while taking part in two weeks of what he described as ‘‘intensive therapy’’ beginning Aug. 5.

Filner is 70 and divorced.

The sexual harassment allegations resulted in widespread calls for him to resign, plunging the nation’s eighth-largest city into political turmoil. He is less than eight months into a four-year term.

Filner is San Diego’s first Democratic mayor in 20 years.

US Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, on Friday joined those calling for Filner to step down.

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