Mark Sanford admits to an affair with an Argentinian woman.
It’s the only fitting word for a man who abandons his wife and four sons on Father’s Day weekend to indulge his “overdrive” on an Argentinian fling.
Mark Sanford: Bastard.
Safe to say that after having his official spokesman lie to the press to cover the affair, Sanford’s career in national politics has just ended. It’s a shame that it came to this, but Sanford brought it on himself.
I don’t know if Sanford is a culture warrior or not, I’m assuming you would have to be as a Republican and chair of the RGA, but for whatever reason, I have to say I like the guy more than I did yesterday, even if he is a hypocrite. He is standing up there, owning his mistake, is not being evasive, and just laying it all out for everyone, and clearly this is a tough thing for him and his family. It is remarkably refreshing.
You know what, though? Even if you cry about how you are a terrible person, on the teevee, and even if there was “a sparkin’ thing” between you and your Argentine Firecracker that you just had to deal with, by flying back and forth to South America to fuck her, leaving your family and, er, entire state of South Carolina to fend for themselves, well you are still a piece of trash. Hope your dumped wife gets everything you’ve ever (and will ever) earn, Mr. soon-to-be lobbyist. Sanford-Santelli 2012!
At The Corner,
Gov. Mark Sanford is admitting to an affair with an Argentinean woman. Normally I think that this stuff should not be public business, but his conduct over the last week made that rule completely untenable.
This dramatic news conference was the first time I had ever watched him, and he came across as a very sincere, humble, and impressive person. If you come across this well on the worst day of your life, you must be doing something right. Is his political career “over”? I frankly don’t care about that. I’m just glad to have seen somebody standing up and doing the right thing, being honest about sin and responsibility.
First Ensign, then the “Crying in Argentina” press conference. If Republicans want a presidential candidate who lives clean and whose family hasn’t been involved in tabloid scandals, it might soon be Mitt Romney by process of elimination.
In a sane country it would be none of my business who Sanford was was having an affair with, and in a sane country gay people would be allowed to get married no matter what people like Sanford think about it.
John Hawkins offers the unsolicited advice that he might as well step down as governor while he’s at it. He adds, “Sanford was a rising star in the Republican party and it was really sad to see him throw away his promising political career this way.”
Indeed. I’d add: At least we’re finding out now rather than in the midst of the presidential race.
EARLIER: Break Out The Milk Cartons!
UPDATE: Ezra Klein
Jonathan Tobin in Commentary
UPDATE #2: Allah Pundit:
Under different circumstances I think he could have survived this, but it’s a quirk of our politics that voters don’t mind cheating as much as they do inept cheating. Infidelity makes you a cad; unannounced week-long disappearances and rambling confessional pressers about the new lady in your life makes you a cad and erratic, and Americans don’t dig erratic in their would-be presidents. Word on the street via Geraghty is that if he doesn’t resign the state legislature will move to impeach him. Not sure what the grounds would be — dereliction of duty for dropping off the map for a week, maybe? — but I doubt he’ll have to be pushed like Blagojevich was.
At the rate we’re going, I’m starting to think Obama might run unopposed in 2012. Exit question: Think The One’s happy that his big health-care infomercial tonight has to compete for headlines tomorrow with Sanford and Iran?
UPDATE #3: Reihan Salam
UPDATE #4: Erick Erickson
Mickey Kaus in Slate
Allah Pundit again:
Few people realize it yet but there’s a fascinating rift opening between those who think Sanford’s a pure scumbag for cheating and those who sympathize with a guy who pretty clearly has fallen in love. The boss is firmly in the first camp, and for once she has some lefties on her side: Witness this piece at Trueslant by Michael Roston, bowled over by the eloquence and dignity displayed this afternoon by Sanford’s wife Jenny. In the second camp: No one yet, but given some of the cooing I’m seeing over Sanford’s love letters to his mistress and the obvious depth of affection he has for her, it won’t be long before he has his qualified defenders too (e.g., “He shouldn’t have cheated, but…”). Which is more forgivable, a roll in the hay or an affair of the heart? The latter’s a graver threat to his marriage but it also suggests that he wouldn’t have hurt his wife unless he felt very, very deeply.
Exit question: So we’re all agreed that “hiking the Appalachian trail” is now officially sexual slang, yes?
UPDATE #5: David Frum
John Dickerson in Slate
UPDATE #6: Danielle Crittenden
UPDATE #7: The worm turns: more time with Maria and more women?
UPDATE #8: The Sanford story continues:
Lucy Morrow Caldwell in The Corner
Mark Steyn in The Corner
Mark Sanford, Republican governor of South Carolina and slave to passion, confesses that his extramarital dockings were more numerous than originally recorded in the public ledger. Understandable. When you’re in a scented tropical daze, time and space begin to undulate and dissolve until it’s hard to keep track of particulars. Yet this was not an erotic fugue state of unclouded bliss for Sanford. No one could argue that his strayings didn’t exact a psychic toll.
I know we’ve covered it but the key bits really have to be heard to be believed. The part where he talks about his “soulmate” is where I finally reached my Don Corleone/Johnny Fontane “you can act like a man!” point. I’m almost surprised he didn’t break into song. The guy’s clearly a wreck, and his judgment’s sufficiently impaired that he thinks three-hour interviews with reporters about his love life are a good idea.
Michelle Cottle at TNR
Joan Walsh in Salon
UPDATE #9: Maureen O’Connor at Gawker