(CNN) - South Carolina Democratic Party chairwoman Carol Fowler said Saturday that Republicans in the legislature should form a bipartisan committee to investigate Gov. Mark Sanford
"Mark Sanford deceived us– the only way now for South Carolinians to feel confident they are being told the truth is for the General Assembly to pursue every recourse under the law to get at that truth," Fowler said in a statement.
Fowler's full statement after the jump
During the past 10 days South Carolinians have been subjected to the greatest display of irresponsible behavior by an elected official in a hundred years. Mark Sanford abandoned his official duties, deceived the public, and misled his family. He has even admitted to using public funds to support his extramarital affair."
"But in spite of 10 days of full national humiliation, South Carolinians still don't know the whole truth. Is Mark Sanford simply an irresponsible public official or guilty of something criminal?
"Mark Sanford has made a mockery of Republican claims to represent family values and stewardship of tax dollars. Now he's hoping his fellow Republicans will turn their heads rather than do what they are obligated to do – investigate how the governor abused the public trust by using official resources to conduct and cover up an affair.
"Just over a week ago Mark Sanford abandoned his duties and sneaked out of the country. He went to great lengths to cover up his conduct – even using his staff to do so. His fellow Republicans should not now be complicit in covering up Sanford's abuses.
"But Attorney General McMaster, who wants to be governor, has said he will not conduct an investigation, perhaps because he fears retribution from Republicans who still support Sanford. This shows a lack of responsibility to the public.
"SLED has also said that it will not investigate. Chief Reggie Lloyd has shown himself to be independent, professional, and responsible, but he is a member of the Governor's Cabinet. So SLED is probably not the appropriate agency to look at Sanford's irresponsible behavior.
"It becomes obvious that the body with the independence, power, resources, and responsibility to investigate Mark Sanford's aberrant, anomalous behavior is the SC General Assembly.
"For these reasons I call upon the Republican leadership of the General Assembly, Speaker Bobby Harrell and Senate President Pro Tem Glen McConnell, to appoint a special bipartisan House and Senate Committee to conduct a thorough, objective, and complete investigation of the whole sordid affair that Mark Sanford has inflicted on South Carolina and its people.
"Mark Sanford deceived us– the only way now for South Carolinians to feel confident they are being told the truth is for the General Assembly to pursue every recourse under the law to get at that truth," said Fowler.