Monday, March 4, 2013
New York Magazine is out with a close-up profile of Sanford, the former S.C. governor who lost all credibility after "hiking along the Applachian trail" -- with his Argentinian mistress in 2009. We knew Sanford had chutzpah, but the profile reveals that in spades: Sanford asked his ex-wife, Jenny, to run his current congressional campaign. "We could put the team back together," he told her.
Jenny Sanford, one of the nation's most publicly cheated-on spouses, was having none of it. She was mentioned as a possible candidate for this congressional seat herself, setting up the prospect of a Sanford-vs.-Sanford campaign. Running her cheating ex-husband's campaign? Uh, no. According to New York Magazine, the two have barely been on speaking terms since their divorce.
Mark Sanford is running for the coastal S.C. congressional seat he represented for three terms before becoming governor (and, briefly, a presidential prospect). It came open when Gov. Nikki Haley appointed Rep. Tim Scott to replace Sen. Jim DeMint, who left the Senate to run the Heritage Foundation. Sanford is expected to win the March 19 Republican primary and face Elizabeth Colbert Busch, comedian Stephen Colbert's sister, in the general election in May.
Jenny Sanford ran her husband's earlier campaigns, and former press secretary Will Folks says "there's absolutely no way" he would have been in Congress or governor without her. Her services were free in those campaigns. When she told him she wouldn't run his campaign this time, he made one last-ditch effort: "I could pay you this time," he told her.
New York Magazine quotes one Sanford associate as saying Jenny Sanford could make or break her ex-husband's campaign. If she backed him, he'd win easily. If she came out and talked about how he mistreated her, "she'd automatically sink his campaign." So far, she's doing neither.
Mark Sanford was censured by the S.C. House for bringing "ridicule, dishonor, shame, and disgrace to himself, the state of South Carolina, and to its citizens." Now it looks like South Carolinians are ready to let him potentially do it again.
-- Taylor Batten
Posted by The Observer Editorial Board at 2:08 PM