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We Hear the Whole Sanford Story -- Way Too Much of it

I liked it better when it looked like South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford had gone all Henry David Thoreau on us.

Now, it turns out, he went all...well, you can fill in the blank. John Ensign? John Edwards? David Vitter?

There was, while it lasted, something attractive in the notion that the governor had gone missing to go missing; “I went to the woods” and all that. As Sanford said this afternoon at the now ritualistic press conference-cum-admission, “when you live in the zone of politics,” there is no zone of privacy, no Blackberry-free moment.

So the image of Sanford, breaking free to hike the Appalachian Trail, contemplating and writing, was appealing in a way that reminded me of President Obama’s wistfulness about his own inability to escape the bubble. Just yesterday, the president was on CBS, talking about the sense of isolated normalcy that he can only achieve playing golf these days.

“It is the only time...where you almost feel normal,” Obama said. “In the sense that you're not in a bubble. There are a whole bunch of Secret Service guys, but they're sort of in the woods...It feels as're out of the container...I realize now, it’s as close as you're going to get to being outside of this place.”

But the Sanford story was, of course, so weird from the start that you knew, in the back of your mind, that this couldn’t be anywhere near the whole truth.

As, inevitably, it wasn’t. “I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude,” Thoreau wrote. Sanford managed to, in Argentina.

So we careened today from not having enough information about the governor to having too much. Way too much. You wanted to turn off the television, but you couldn’t -- and so there was Sanford talking about “that whole sparking thing” and “serious overdrive.”

Really, if Sanford’s sparking, I don’t want to know about it, whatever drive he’s in. As Sanford said, “I’ll give you way more detail than you’ll ever want.” I don’t want to think about Eliot Spitzer with his socks on or Larry Craig with his wide stance. And the psychobabble about “getting one’s heart right in life” and “the odyssey that we’re all on in life with regard to heart” may be harder to take than the seamy sexual details.

I know the point is long past when the press could look the other way at a politician’s dalliances. But if they can’t stop themselves from straying, could they at least stop themselves from holding press conferences to announce it? We can’t cover these things up, but do we really have to keep on covering them live?

By Ruth Marcus  | June 24, 2009; 4:03 PM ET
Categories:  Marcus  | Tags:  Ruth Marcus  
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Next: Sanford's Train Wreck


Come on, Ruth, you're talking about men and women (but primarily men) who live to be before the microphone, and about a media only too happy to oblige them. When the press as one entity decides to stop pandering to these politicians who, I suspect, only regret getting caught with their pants down, it'll go away. Until then, spare me the crocodile tears being shed over how overwhelming it it is for the poor, beleagured media.

Posted by: dewdrop2 | June 24, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"...and which he had disclosed to his wife, Jenny, five months ago"


If he hadn't been caught, he'd've continued having the affair and giving the middle finger to his wife and family....

Posted by: vigor | June 24, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Your choice of some words are little less than awe-inspiring. Yes he did do some 'trail blazing' and the mess is sometimes very difficult to clean up. Do we have more info than we need to? I can only hope that the more info the public gets, the sooner we can stop reading about it in the papers, and see it on our TV's. (Now I know why I quit DTV, and loving it). The public loves nothing more than to roast somebody but yet they forget about all the transgressions they have committed. I just loved Sen. Granthan's -D. Mich. (sp) comment, "What is it about you MEN that causes you........". That was choice. Let me remind her and anyone like her, that since women have become more prominent in the public eye, they are becoming more prominent in the bedrooms and hotels across America as well.

Posted by: jakesfriend1 | June 24, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Not sure why Ms. Marcus assumes we do have the whole story at this point. Sanford and his staff have been lying through their teeth every step of the way.

Posted by: Ibleedburgundy | June 24, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it still somewhat different from the sheer lust and cynicism of the Spitzer or Craig affairs? Does falling in love make Governor Sanford's behaviour a little bit more forgivable? Of course, it does not excuse his reckless behaviour with respect to the people of SC and his family, but at least it is humanly understandable.

Posted by: Genie_ | June 24, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

If I switch to the Republican party can I then have an extra marital affair and be on TV?

Posted by: msjn1 | June 24, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

The press did not know for sure what he was going to say at the press conference.

Sanford's behavoir sure was weird.


Posted by: AndreaT1 | June 24, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

It's not so much too much information as too much dishonesty which in regards to the sanctity of marriage the press lets politicians (and themselves) off the hook all too easily. When was the last time we let voters decide on the "holiness" of adulterous affairs? Yet the politicians and the press think its a-ok to let the voters decide whether or not gay people can get married.
Straight people really ought to grow up and start acting like adults otherwise we gay "kids" are gonna be without a role model.

Posted by: jpsbr2002 | June 24, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Why does anyone believe this is the whole story from Sanford?

He's been hiding information every step of the way.

It's always a story when a family values sanctity of marriage preaching politician has an affair.

In fact, I suspect they preach about it because having affairs is always on their mind.

It's the people who have to publicly proclaim moral integrity and moral values all the time that you have to watch because they are always thinking about "sinning."

Posted by: AlanGoldberg54 | June 24, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I'll be honest, I'm not going to wait around for a response on this - but - Jakes Friend - what the H3LL are you talking about?

Posted by: JohnDinHouston | June 24, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Why on earth does one fly to the other side of the planet to have an affair with another woman? I think there is something more to this story, and we've heard the story he wanted to tell. Why indeed does a Republican governor from a conservative southern state fly to the other side of the planet to have sex? Why indeed.

Posted by: mmeyerdc | June 24, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Genie, I think you're right, it seems like he fell in love. He's behaving like a decent man distraught by loss---of his love, his wife, his family, his career, and his self-respect. I usually don't feel too sorry for these guys, but this time I'm a little sympathetic.

Posted by: chantooz | June 24, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Genie and chantooz,

I hear where you're coming from but for me the bottom line--the phrase Sanford used over and over in his rambling apologia--is that I don't have much sympathy for someone who sets himself up as a know-it-all arbiter of morality and then turns out to be just as messy as the rest of us. A little more humanity from the get go would have been appropriate.

Posted by: HydeParker | June 24, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: JudgeAlan | June 24, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Appalachia, Argentina--it's easy enough to confuse the two.

Did he wear his "hiking" outfit back to the States?

Posted by: aguy7 | June 24, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

What was most interesting was that he said he "apologized" but never said he was "sorry" about the adultery. I got the sense he was bragging, in a way, about how bad he felt about being so baaaaaad. I'm surprised he didn't have a sex tape ready for the press conference.

Posted by: Eulipian | June 24, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Heh heh heh, dude, she wrote "cum-admission". Heh, heh.

(Where were the editors for her column?)

Posted by: Whatsacubit | June 24, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

This blog appears to be one of those that started off as something else -- the "Walden" angle. And Marcus did not sufficiently change it enough to fit the new set of facts. A wee bit lazy.

Posted by: mypitts2 | June 24, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

He's disgusting. I feel nothing in terms of sympathy for him at all. My sympathy is with his wife and kids. No regard for his families feelings or well being while off on his selfish, sinful affair. They are the one's that we should feel compelled to comfort not that scumbag. He didn't even spend fathers day with his kids. What a loser and I am so tired of politicians like him that display a moral high ground until caught in the act. I can't imagaine the grief his wife has had to endure and the embarrasment for the kids. To have a dad that turns his back on his family is horrible. Selfish people like him are why American families are in such disarray. I feel nothing but contempt for the hypocrite.

Posted by: fordfour | June 24, 2009 7:32 PM | Report abuse


The man's undergrad is in 'foreign affairs.'

This was just a 'field trip.' LOL


Posted by: | June 24, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

ya right...boring. But guess what? It's people like you who insist on total coverage, following a story to the end of the earth in one day. If it was you broke the next story, Marcus, you'd be in heaven. Say it ain't so, Ruth..

Posted by: dudh | June 24, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Sanford was a train wreck from the day he turned down the stimulus...

Posted by: demtse | June 24, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

I didn't even see the press conference and I *still* feel like I know too much. I always think the same thing when these stories come out: I don't want to know.

Posted by: gillyrosh | June 24, 2009 8:46 PM | Report abuse

"Too much information," exactly my reaction. Although I liked best this reaction by a SC Republican official in today's WSJ:

Rep. Bob Inglis, a South Carolina Republican, said it is time to rethink its notion of morality, and perhaps the governor's travails could help move that process along. "If it causes us to lose the stinking rot of self-righteousness and causes us to understand we are all in need of some grace, it could be a very good thing for the Republican Party," he said.

Posted by: Jeff-for-progress | June 24, 2009 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Up in Alaska, Gov. Palin can see the White House from her house.

Posted by: diahni | June 24, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

got down with OPP...

Posted by: DaMan2 | June 24, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

So Ruth doesn't want to know. She's just happy to get a column out of the story. People like Ruth have a tendency to write columns that smack of the "holier than thou" variety. On the other hand, how are we to know? It's not often (uniquely recall her colleague, Richard Cohen's, peccadilloes) that we know anything about the skeletons in the closets of any contributors to WaPo or any other mainstream paper. So tell us, Ruth, what should we know?

Posted by: wturecki | June 24, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

The man is weak ... throw him out ! We don't need a J*A*C*C*A*S*S to represent us ... THE WHOLE WORLD IS WATCHING. He is a disgrace to his family , his gender and the country.

Posted by: noHUCKABEEnoVOTE | June 24, 2009 10:25 PM | Report abuse

It seems like Sanford was more interested in a tail than in a trail. But I suppose a political wilderness may be just as desolate as a natural one. One thing you can say about our two party system- both sets of institutions seem to be electing people more interested in having a good party than serving the people. And I don't mean a political party.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | June 24, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, the conservative gov. acted like a liberal in one regard, hopefully he practiced safe sex and used a condom...

Posted by: Phil6 | June 24, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

In life there are always a few things you regret that you didn't get around to do because you were busy doing something else. One of those things is having a tango in Argentina.

Posted by: Slager21 | June 24, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Question: "How long has this been going on"? If Gov. Sanford told his wife about his "AFFAIR", months ago, why are the people of South Carolina, just finding about this "TODAY"? It don't take no "ROCKET SCIENTIST", to figure out this "DOG AND PONY SHOW", called Mark Sanford. Maybe in the future he will keep his "MOUTH-SHUT", when it comes to other Politician's "INDISCRETIONS".

Posted by: austininc4 | June 24, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Gee Oh Pee
Party of He-Pock-Russee

yes democraps are weak-willed dishonest sniveling greedy narcissistic power hungry disingenuous liars too

but they don’t go around claiming to be the party of god, god’s chosen ones, ‘family values’, so on and so forth — proclaiming their moral superiority over all others while indulging behind doors (or in argentina or a bathroom stall or….) in exactly that which they sneer and snivel about.

sanford: what a tool and sc voters are equally stupid

this kind of schadenfreude is sweet sweet sweet
— danke shoen for schadenfreude

Posted by: flacan | June 24, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Article was right on point. The Oprah-like confession was pathetic. Can you imagine our political idols of the past like FDR, JFK, or MLK blubbering and crying in public about their extramarital affairs that way? It shows the extent to which American culture has been feminized.

Posted by: markthurt | June 24, 2009 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Oh great. First the Republicans ruin the economy, now they are outsourcing adultery.


Posted by: MikeLicht | June 24, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

The guy is a punk. Dime a dozen. He's sorry he got caught somewhere along the line; that's all. Fun while it lasted, right? Best solution: resign. Disappear. We have bigger things to worry about, and I'm sure South Carolina does, also.

Posted by: strattonriv | June 24, 2009 11:26 PM | Report abuse

I wholeheartedly agree. Thank you for expressing this opinion. This guy is lame, and missing a few too many screws or marbles as the case may be. Check into St. E's but don't hold a press conference. We're back to the SS Monkey Business. Whatever happened to not "kissing and telling".

Believe me I have probably spent more time enjoying coitus with various beautiful members of the opposite sex than has the governor of SC. Its not just the illicit liaison, its Republicans into the kinkiest stuff imaginable. Its become rather revolting, and disgusting. Too many would be willing participants at David Carradine's going-away party.

Posted by: periculum | June 25, 2009 12:24 AM | Report abuse

Another political career comes to an end. Or at least I hope so. I sympathize with his wife and children. He's scum.

Posted by: rwoloszyn | June 25, 2009 12:32 AM | Report abuse

I think the Appalachia thing was a polite way of telling everyone to 'take a hike'. Well .... dont cha' know that's a two edged sword. Anyway. A certain luv sick puppy wants the great outdoors more, less office.... I say "Go for it".

Posted by: deepthroat21 | June 25, 2009 2:02 AM | Report abuse

Last week Ensign, this week Sanford. WOW the republicans really should giving the rest of us their nonsense sermon about their "family Values"

People have difficult marriages that may or may not lead to affairs, life is not black and white as the preachie republicans like to claim it is..

How ever this story ends up , I hope his wife and four boys come out of this whole and can forgive thier father..

Posted by: Jena1 | June 25, 2009 2:54 AM | Report abuse

ttraub wrote: . . Why are Democrats silent when it comes to Bill Clinton's colossal indiscretions in the White House, yet they jump all over this Sanford affair so gleefully?
ttraub, why is it that the only way Republicans can talk about an issue is to create strawmen to go against. . . . . . . . Just look at the Democratic posts on this site. They aren't condemming Sanford for an extra-marital affair.

Democrats are condemming him for being such a hypocrit. Sanford turkey stomped all over America condemming Bill Clinton and calling for his resignation. Sanford has feasted at the banquet of Biblical quotes condemming his rivals. . . . . . And now the turkeys have come home to roost. . . . . . . . . . . . . Americans have had Republicans excerise their "moral authority" all over us, like imprisoning private individuals for crimes against themselves. Also Republicans like Sanford have demonized private Americans like Dr. George Tiller until someone murdered him. . . . . . . . . I think it's high-time that Republicans got some of their due back. Sanford was one of those sticking the power of the state down our noses, and yes, I'm glad the venial, pernicious bum got burned.

Posted by: Here2day | June 25, 2009 4:25 AM | Report abuse

This would be a non-story if not for the fact that he played the 'holier than thou' card throughout his career. Even in spite of that, I feel sorry for him to have his life, such as it is, splashed and discussed nationally. I certainly hope the press leaves his wife and kids alone.

Posted by: lj0806 | June 25, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

I guess Marcus did not want to write about Sanford.

So why did she?


Posted by: lichtme | June 25, 2009 7:12 AM | Report abuse

Chantooz and others sympathetic to Sanford: Listen closely to his "mea culpa" and the part where he lists those he has "hurt". First on the list "I have hurt HER" - not his wife, his sons, but "HER".

That really got to me and made me much less ready to believe in his sincerity or apology. And to abdicate his responsibilities as governor, leave his staff in the dark, no one in charge in case of emergencies - shows where his priorities are.

Posted by: Utahreb | June 25, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

"...and which he had disclosed to his wife, Jenny, five months ago"


If he hadn't been caught, he'd've continued having the affair and giving the middle finger to his wife and family....

Posted by: vigor | June 24, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

He DID continue the affair. His wife found out five months ago and he got caught in the last week or so.

Posted by: singlemom | June 25, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Does it really matter?

Posted by: Krazijoe | June 25, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps all of us should remember that we are all sinners and cease judging others. That would, in particular, be aimed at the so-called religious right and values voters. Glass houses and all that. The interest is not in the individual sinners but enjoying their come-uppance when they prove to be like the rest of us ... imperfect human beings trying to be better but failing most of the time. I, too, feel sorry for his wife and children. But I THINK I might feel sorry for a self-righteous prig who discovered he might not have all the answers for himself, much less for the rest of us. And that would be the difference between those who judge and condemn others and insist we all live life as they perceive it should morally be, and those who know all of us are capable, under the right circumstances, of most anything, as John Huston so memorably said in "Chinatown". Let us all struggle to do the right thing and know we will fail at least part of the time ... and cease to judge others in their failings. TOLERANCE for all of us and our imperfections might be a better moral stance.

Posted by: littleoldlady | June 25, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

He should just apologize to his wife, no one else, and get divorced.

That being said, I would trade this embarassment in front of everybody if that is what it took to get out of a boring
relationship with a piggish American woman.

throw the wife half the money and move on. Men are not monagamous and all these people wringing their hands or
laughing are really jealous and hypocritical.

Half of them wish they could dump their gross spouses themselves.

Keep kidding yourselves. Sanford will have the last laugh when he is relaxing with a nice Argentenian babe while you are watching Shrek III with a dumpy wife and five brats.

Posted by: jackson641 | June 25, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

i concur.... too much info from this guy. what kind of a psychologocal mindset does he have to make him expose these accutely personal family blurbs into a national press announcement?! it appears that he is delusional and has no appreciation at moment of the impact of a 'conservative' governor going primitive for a week and leaving no one informed of his whereabouts or contact info. affairs happen, but this rambling in front of cameras is truly something only a self centered politician would attempt, or possibly a hollywood no talent starlett. the new anna nicole smith.

Posted by: dave86 | June 25, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Many Americans fail to understand that a person can govern and govern well; we have CEO's who lead firms and lead them well; we have generals and admirals who lead military organizations and lead them well. There are many in those ranks who fail the moral hurdle. The Puritan ethic is alive and well in this country. It misled many people then (how many people were innocently killed to fulfil the group lust for blood killing) and it continues to mislead people know.

We have a new priest hood in the guise of psychologists. Several practioners of this new religion will now parade across the stage arguing that these individuals suffer from some additiction and should receive our absolution after undergoing penance for their misdeeds. Whatever form of treatment they suggest will be the penance to be paid. Subsequently, after undergoing penance (which will have been well paid for-indulgence payment), the patient will be cleared of the problem with appropriate followup (weekly confessional). My apologies to any religious people who may have been offended by the previous statements: I am not trying to demean an honest profession.

The real culprits are we who fail to recognize the difference between governing and being saints. Saints tend to lead us into tyranny. The Ayatollahs are good examples of this.

By insisting on having a puritan ethic be a major standard by which we measure each other is to refuse to come to grips with who we are. Until we do recognize that human failure does not preclude the ability to govern, we will continue to have this type of spectacle.

Sanford has the real issue of simply disappearing without handing over control of the state government. What if the plane broke up in flight over the Atlantic, how long would the state have been 'leaderless'. Or if he had died in Buenos Aires; the consulate did not know he was there. Would his mistress have simply dumped his body in the Rio Plata and notified authorities anonymously two days later? That displays an incredible lack of judgement. That is grounds for asking for his removal.

Posted by: charst46 | June 25, 2009 10:35 AM | Report abuse

What is with these men/ so what you have a lover. My annoyance is the cowardly I'm sorry. I would like a male who was unashamed of being male and a woman unashamed of being female and both sexes stop trying to treat us the public like some fairytale. I blame the media in part and the entrenched hypocrisy. We don't care! What we want in good government and politicians with guts. I remember how the media pushed for these "saints" now we get very bad legislation on the sexual front by these politicians who are throwing a bone to their critics. And if any of you think that the spouse did not know, the word for you is naive!

Posted by: vx24 | June 25, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

I would have an affair but my wife won't let me.

Posted by: chopin224 | June 25, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

I think that there is far more to this story and this is just the tip of the iceberg. Next up, he'll admit how he used public funds as his own bank account to make these trips. Surely, a state governor can't afford so many first class trips to the Appalachian Trail, let alone South America, on state pay. Wifey surely would have noticed. Even if he is independently wealthy as some reports have alluded, the IRS will surely get involved because he didn't claim the extra income on his taxes. The ship be sinking.

Posted by: newporter | June 25, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

The Mark Sanford Argentina Extramarital Affair Art Tile

Posted by: frankieblacken | June 25, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Which married gay couple is responsible for the collapse of his marriage?

Posted by: uh_huhh | June 25, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

After the babbling press conference..can you imagine if he was POTUS.

Posted by: rbsellers | June 25, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I find Gov. Sanford's politics and political grandstanding distasteful, but I find his personal heartbreak very human and tragic. The ruins of his personal and political life must be overwhelming for him to contemplate.

The plain truth of the matter is that most men play around to greater or lesser degree, and so do many women. Always have, always will. The problem is the myth that we can live by certain religiously imposed rules that are completely unrealistic and then bury the offender in guilt for being a human being when these rules are broken. I'm certainly not suggesting that one shouldn't try take one's marriage vows seriously, what I am saying is that men and women slip and it's not really the end of the world.

Posted by: Katy5 | June 25, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I understand why Ruth Marcus wouldn't want to hear about this. She's a Republican and Republicans never want to hear about the ridiculously immoral behavior and hypocrisy of the men they favor for office.

But what we have NOT heard enough about is their previous fallen angel, John Ensign. The major networks did not even MENTION his affair and his weird living arrangements on their nightly newscasts (even though they somehow found the time to present lengthy stories about a mountain-climbing rich teenager and other equally insipid garbage every night). Now, John Ensign was a contender for the Republican nomination, a member of the party's leadership in the Senate, and has been particularly hand-wringing and unctuous in his pseudo-moralism, including a high-profile role in the "Promise Keepers." And yet his story was somehow deemed insufficiently newsworthy to make the network news.

A double standard prevails on this kind of story. While Eliot Spitzer was hounded out of office, David Vitter remains in his Senate seat despite committing the EXACT SAME TRANSGRESSION. Where Bill Clinton was the subject of only the second impeachment in American history (despite never even being ACCUSED of anything illegal) for actions that had no public policy aspect to them at all, Bush and Cheney were allowed to get away with handing no-bid contracts to cronies openly in full public view with complete impunity. Antonin Scalia even gets away with palling around with Dick Cheney when Cheney is the defendant in a case that was before the Court at that very time.

One of the reasons for this is that whenever a Democratic officeholder strays, Republicans get up on their hypocritical high horses and hector them unremittingly, and the news media gives them the airtime to do it, until the Democrat resigns. Democrats, on the other hand, always try to be understanding of the human foibles we are all subject to from time to time.

I am unusual in that, although I am a Democrat, I want to string these hypocritical old pharisees up by their thumbs, and forgive those who are less ready to condemn others for their failures.

Posted by: FergusonFoont | June 25, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

"Now, it turns out, he went all...well, you can fill in the blank. John Ensign? John Edwards? David Vitter?" Why not add Bill Clinton?

Posted by: carlosolea | June 25, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

why is it that people in the "party of values and morality" can't seem to keep it in their pants? yeah, of course there are edwards, spitzer, clinton - all dems who also couldn't keep it in their pants - but i don't recall them running around condemning everyone else who doesn't do it. doesn't make it right, but the hypocrisy of the republican party is so overwhelming i can't figure out how the religious right can justify its allegiance. someone please explain that one to me.

Posted by: cantwaitfor08 | June 25, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

It is that pesky Y chromosome again!! Run, don't walk, to the Emily's List web site and donate to help foster the careers of female politicians. The women in Congress may be less entertaining, but they are much more principled.

Posted by: conchfc | June 25, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and FergusonFoont, Ruth Marcus is not a Republican!! For goodness sake -- her husband is a key Administration figure. This isn't a Carville - Matalin deal.

Posted by: conchfc | June 25, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

This guy's personal life is his own business. Why did the media allow him to go on and on and on? He's just a different flavor of publicity hound. Details of his relationship is for Oprah or Barbara Walters, not the political news.

Republicans deserve to be called out for hypocrisy after wasting a year of Congress's time poking into Clinton's non-public life. But it doesn't merit this much attention.

Posted by: lartfromabove | June 25, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

conchfc wrote, "It is that pesky Y chromosome again!! Run, don't walk, to the Emily's List web site and donate to help foster the careers of female politicians. The women in Congress may be less entertaining, but they are much more principled."

If I'm not mistaken, every heterosexual act of marital infidelity involves a male and a female, so unless all those unfaithful males are banging the same female, your point just doesn't hold water.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | June 25, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

There's an old pop psychology saying that rings true in this context: men tend to use power to get sex, while women tend to use sex to get power.

This might partially explain the proclivity for philandering of our elected men, and the comparative self-control of our elected women. The women in question already *have* power.

We must meditate further on the differential distribution of demon lust, if Ms. Marcus can bear it.

And there might be something to conchfc's point after all.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | June 25, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

"Wahhh.... I had an affair... feel sorry for me...wahhh!"

Posted by: gmcduluth | June 25, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it still somewhat different from the sheer lust and cynicism of the Spitzer or Craig affairs? Does falling in love make Governor Sanford's behaviour a little bit more forgivable? Of course, it does not excuse his reckless behaviour with respect to the people of SC and his family, but at least it is humanly understandable.
Actually no...there's only one thing more painful to a wife than finding out that her husband cheated on her with another one; that thing is finding out that he actually fell in love with the other woman. From all of the accounts that I've read, Sanford's wife loved him and was a good wife; she didn't deserve. If he couldn't reciprocate the love, then he should have let her go before entering into another relationship--that would have been the manly thing to do, and then I could respect him. Actually, he's no different in my eyes than John Edwards whom I think is deplorable.

Posted by: Beingsensible | June 25, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

I feel like Genie. It was difficult to watch. His political views notwithstanding.
(which I find just plain stupid) This man fell in love with this woman. Perhaps it was the distance, the mystique of a woman in a foreign land - speaking many other languages - she was interesting and not safe. His wife seems a lovely woman - safe-boring-conventional-her life consumed ( as it should be) with her boys. This stuff happens everyday. That may seem harsh but that is the reality. He is a broken man. We don't need to kick him - he is already down and probably being much harder on himself than we can ever be. He is human. Yesterday he was incoherent - broken- desperately trying to figure out in which direction his life should go. I feel for his wife and boys. He doesn't though. He grieves for the woman in Argentina. He apologized to her yesterday on international tv. He is accountable and will likely pay the ultimate price in terms of wife and family but maybe he will find peace and love. It may seem as though I am excusing his behavior . I AM NOT!! He has made a big mistake but we should not stand in judgment - I am agnostic but really believe that all humans live in glass houses.

Posted by: valjalo1 | June 25, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Oh,I get it. When a woman confesses to a sexual indescretion. The media c\goes all Oprah, but when it's a man...

Posted by: DWNicolo | June 26, 2009 3:02 AM | Report abuse

Sanford should have lied about his affair like Bill Clinton. It seems like all the media and Democrats defended Clinton after cheating, lying to the public and lying to a Federal judge. They said that cheating was no big deal and a personal matter. I guess lying to a Federal judge wasn't either even though there are many serving time for that act.
Media, Democrats and WP parrots are all big time hypocrites, they like THEIR OWN cheaters, liars and law breakers. ROFL even Pelosi appointed the felon, Dem Jefferson, to the Office of Homeland Security after 90,000 in marked bills were found in his freezer. Obama appoints a tax cheat to head the IRS. Again, Obama pays millions to ACORN whose founder is charged with stealing organization money and the group is being indicted in 19 stated for voter fraud. Again Obama fires an Inspector General after he blew the whistle on one of Obama’s friends for using tax payer’s money for personal use.
Spitzer was replaced after an affair only to be replaced by another cheater who is still there. The Father and celebrated leader of the Democrats, Ted Kennedy was a known philanderer and used his power to thwart an investigation into the murder of Mary Jo Kopecni when he was in a drunken stupor. Too bad for Sanford that he’s not a Democrat, he’s hiring value would have increased.
They are Hypocrites with no moral authority to point fingers at anyone.

Posted by: ekim53 | June 26, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

At first we were tittilated by the aspect that Sanford was hiking and he was naked. Well, half of that was right, so we can still be tittlilated.

Posted by: creatia52 | June 26, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Well, at least we now have a new phrase for an old transgression: "Climbing the Appalachian trail". I personally hope that the phrase catches on, I like it.

Posted by: johnperney | June 26, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, I cannot stand this guy Sanford. He marries an heiress, who bears him four sons, sacrifices her career for his and he betrays her. Disgusting.

Posted by: johnperney | June 26, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, I cannot stand this guy Sanford. He marries an heiress, who bears him four sons, sacrifices her career for his and he betrays her. Disgusting.

Posted by: johnperney | June 26, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Sanford should be's not the adultery...I can live with that, but rather the shear hypocrisy of his actions in relation to his core set of beliefs. Just like with Ensign and Vitter. But to be fair, I think just as awful is Clinton and Edwards who took deception to new heights to cover their action and, as a result, completely eroded their credibility and ability to govern. But probably the worst of the bunch has to be Spitzer because of the sordid details and shear amounts of money he was spending on "massages".

Oh yeah, and hopefully we've heard the end of all of these "leaders".

Posted by: d-35 | June 26, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

WHAT? He goes tripping on Father's Day--Hop,Hop. down the Bunny Trail, Just take the short cut over there and WEEEE! Hot dang--I don't give a rap-getting it on with spanky in Argen tin a! Holler! See ya later-getting my freak on baby! Cha, Cha here, Cha Cha there-WEEEE-oh dang I been gone two weeks---she whipped it-gotta go back-let's see-cry that always works boo hoo--I got caught!!!!

Posted by: Scar1 | June 27, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

None of these guys make the honor list. And dang her name starts with a M too. What is it? MMMMMMMMMMMMMMM! Yep a little too much info.

Posted by: Scar1 | June 27, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

The Sanford story is strange or sad -- depending upon your political leanings, but is not important.

It might surprise your readers to learn that a US Congressman's wife just plead guilty to bribery charges and could spend 5 years in jail. The Congressman chairs the House Judiciary Committee, which is the committee charged with overseeing our legal system. His wife is a public servant -- serves on the city council in her husband's district. Wonder how the paper that broke Watergate missed this story?

Posted by: Bailey6 | June 29, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

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