I Wish I Were In Paris

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Worst Kept Secret

This has to be the worst kept secret since the announcement that Jon & Kate were divorcing!!

SC Gov. Sanford admits affair after going AWOL

COLUMBIA, S.C. – After going AWOL for seven days, Gov. Mark Sanford admitted Wednesday that he had secretly flown to Argentina to visit a woman with whom he was having an affair. Wiping away tears, he apologized to his wife and four sons and said he will resign as head of the Republican Governors Association.

"I've been unfaithful to my wife," he said in a bombshell news conference in which the 49-year-old governor ruminated aloud with remarkable frankness on God's law, moral absolutes and following one's heart. He said he spent the last five days "crying in Argentina."

Sanford, who in recent months had been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate in 2012, ignored questions about whether he would step down as governor.

At least one state lawmaker called for his resignation. As a congressman, Sanford voted in favor of three of four articles of impeachment against President Bill Clinton, citing the need for "moral legitimacy."

The affair is now over, Sanford said, describing the woman who lives in Argentina as a "dear, dear friend" that he's known for about eight years and been romantically involved with for about a year. He said he's seen her three times since the affair began, and wife found out about it five months ago.

"What I did was wrong. Period," he said. His family did not attend the news conference, and his wife Jenny Sanford said she asked the governor to leave and stop speaking to her two weeks ago. The governor says he wants to reconcile, and his wife's statement said her husband has earned a chance to resurrect their marriage.

"This trial separation was agreed to with the goal of ultimately strengthening our marriage," she said.

Sanford denied instructing his staff to cover up his affair, but acknowledged that he told them he thought he would be hiking on the Appalachian Trail and never corrected that impression after leaving for South America.

"I let them down by creating a fiction with regard to where I was going," Sanford said. "I said that was the original possibility. Again, this is my fault in ... shrouding this larger trip."

Questions about Sanford's whereabouts arose early this week. For two days after reporters started asking questions, his office had said he had gone hiking on the trail.

Cornered at the Atlanta airport by a reporter from The State newspaper, Sanford revealed Wednesday morning that he'd gone to Argentina for a seven-day trip.

When news first broke about his mysterious disappearance, Jenny Sanford told The Associated Press she did not know where her husband had gone for the Father's Day weekend.

Sanford emerged Wednesday afternoon at a news conference, where he mused openly of his love of hiking and how he used to guide trips along the Appalachian Trail, and eventually tearfully apologized to his wife, his staff and his friends — but without yet saying what he was apologizing for.

"I hurt a lot of different folks," he said, occasionally choking up throughout the news conference that lasted about 20 minutes.

With those watching still wondering what he was admitting, Sanford said: "The odyssey that we're all on in life is with regard to heart."

Several residents said they were disappointed.

"He shouldn't have lied to us. He should have been up straight," said college student Gerald Walker, 19, in downtown Columbia. "It's very embarrassing for someone in a leadership role that we are supposed to respect, especially me being a young guy."

Glenn Mitchell, of Columbia, said he felt Sanford's absence showed a lack of concern for the state.

"He left the state unattended," said Mitchell, 54, out of work recuperating from surgery. "He just hasn't been there for us."

State Rep. Todd Rutherford, D-Columbia, called for Sanford's resignation.

"There is nothing left to save," Rutherford said. "There is no reason for him to remain as governor."

Sanford, a former three-term congressman, was elected governor in 2002. He has more than a year remaining in his second term and is barred by state law from running again.

The libertarian-leaning Republican was seldom a firebrand. But he was known for salting tales of family life into policy discussions.

He criticized the $787 billion federal stimulus law and efforts by legislators to claim a share of it by saying in tough times a family would sit around the table and find ways to cut spending.

His vocal battle against the Obama administration over the stimulus money won praise from conservative pundits, but ultimately, a state court order required him to take the money.

Jenny Sanford, a millionaire whose family fortune comes from the Skil Corp. power tool company, has been central to Sanford's political career. She ran his congressional campaigns and his first race for governor. She was an almost daily fixture at senior staff meetings, and often could be seen driving a minivan away from the Statehouse in the mornings.

The two met when Sanford, who has an MBA, was trying his hand on Wall Street. She was working at a brokerage house when he entered a training program.

As governor, Sanford has had seemingly endless run-ins with the GOP-dominated Legislature, once bringing pigs to the House chamber to protest pork barrel spending. He also put a "spending clock" outside his office to show how quickly a proposed budget would spend state money.

Sanford's announcement came a day after another prominent Republican, Sen. John Ensign of Nevada, apologized to his GOP Senate colleagues after revealing last week that he had an affair with a campaign staffer and was resigning from the GOP leadership.

Is he offering to resign or does he prefer to be impeached? After all, there's a "need for moral legitimacy."

I was watching the reaction to this news on MSNBC. Dan Rather was on. He actually said that Sanford was "almost a sympathetic figure" today. Don't make me choke!! He's an adulterer Dan!! But more importantly, he's a LIAR!! He lied to his staff who then lied to the people of South Carolina and the country.

First the lie was that he was taking a few days to regroup after losing the fight over stimulus money. The second lie was that he was hiking ALONE in the Appalachian Mountains. Seriously, nobody bought that story. What normal person goes hiking alone in the mountains? Nobody!! Not even a state governor!! The third lie was that he was hanging out in Atlanta. Sure, he was in Atlanta to catch a flight to Argentina!! Now the people are supposed to believe that he was crying for five days in Argentina, and didn't once see the woman he was having an affair with?

And THIS is a sympathetic character?

No, this is a lying adulterer who knew that he better say something because his dirty little secret was bound to come out sooner or later.

Other members of the media were suggesting that he be cut some slack because he was "being a man and told the truth". These are the same people who had no problem airing every last detail about Bill Clinton's affair. Hell, we're still talking about it today. These are the same people who have had no problem airing every last detail about the affair that John Edwards had.

Do I want to hear every last detail about Sanford's affair? Spare me the barf bag!! What I would like to see though is that he's treated like every other lying, cheating politician. No kid gloves!! No "sympathetic figure" portrayal!! No excuses!!

He should be impeached or he should resign from the job as governor. He not only lied, but he also failed to do his job when he left the state without a contingency plan in place and failed to notify anyone of his trip.


  • At 11:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Typical American politics. Clinton wasn't forced out over his little tete a tete, so why should Sanford? Or so think many Americans...

    This is why the Republicans are loosing membership. Not quite the moral compass they want to be. And this coming from someone who relates more to repubs than dems...

    This country has serious social, moral and ethical problems. Reminds me of another society of old...or two. The ones the founders of the this country looked to for inspiration...too bad they didn't forsee the rest of the nation following suit in other ways...

  • At 9:17 PM, Blogger ParisL0ve2 said…

    Why should Sanford be forced out of office?

    He should be booted from office because HE STOLE TAXPAYER MONEY TO GO SEE HIS MISTRESS. That money could have been used for more important things, but was instead used to pay for his travel expenses and who knows what else so that he could go see his mistress.

    I don't want to hear this crap about how he's going to pay the state back. It doesn't erase the fact that he stole it in the first place.

    He should be booted from office because HE NEGLECTED HIS DUTIES AS GOVERNOR.

    I couldn't go MIA for a week, and have a job when I came back. Neither could anyone else in this country. So why the hell should he still be employed?

    FYI- They tried to force Clinton out by impeaching him. As it turns out, Sanford voted to impeach Clinton. As it turns out, Sanford is a hypocrite. He should take his own advice and step down as Governor.


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