June 30th, 2009
01:51 PM ET
5 years ago

Sanford should stay, two top South Carolina papers say

An influential South Carolina newspaper published an editorial Tuesday that said Gov. Mark Sanford should not step down.
An influential South Carolina newspaper published an editorial Tuesday that said Gov. Mark Sanford should not step down.

(CNN) - Two major South Carolina newspapers are calling on Gov. Mark Sanford to stay in office.

Last Wednesday, Sanford admitted to a year long extramarital affair with a woman from Argentina. The governor also acknowledged he did not tell his staff that he was in Argentina during a five-day period when his location was not known.

Despite calls from some South Carolina lawmakers and politicians for the governor to resign, Sanford, meanwhile, appears to be standing firm. He wrote in a message to his political action committee e-mail list on Monday that while he considered resigning, "I would ultimately be a better person and of more service in whatever doors God opened next in life if I stuck around to learn lessons rather than running and hiding down at the farm."

The State, the Columbia newspaper that last week broke the story that Sanford was in Argentina, in an editorial Tuesday, says Sanford should stay in office to keep the playing field leveled for the 2010 gubernatorial contest. If Sanford resigns, Lt. Governor Andre Bauer, a fellow Republican but no ally of Sanford, would become governor. Bauer is among a number of candidates who are interested in running for governor in 2010. Sanford is term limited and can't run for re-election next year.

"Reasonable people can disagree over whether it would be better to have Mr. Sanford or Mr. Bauer in the governor's office for the next 18 months. And if Mr. Bauer were not running for governor, this might be a more difficult call. But Mr. Bauer is running for governor, and it simply is not responsible to overlook the tremendous advantage he would have if he were able to use the bully pulpit of that office for the next year," says an op-ed in The State.

The State also raised serious questions about Bauer's preparedness to lead. "Although this could change in the coming year," they wrote, "to this point Mr. Bauer simply has not demonstrated that he has the vision to lead our state.

The editorial questioned Bauer's character and highlighted past run-ins with law enforcement, including the time he used a police radio to waive off state troopers after he was caught driving 101 MPH on a South Carolina highway in a state car.

The paper also questioned whether Bauer was sincere in his suggestion to CNN Monday that he would give up a 2010 gubernatorial bid in exchange for taking over the rest of Sanford's term.

They wrote that Bauer had made a similar pledge before, but failed to keep his promise.

"If we're looking to rid our state of embarrassment, it's hard to see how replacing Mr. Sanford with Mr. Bauer would accomplish that. And it's hard to overstate the potential long-term downside of such a move."

The Charleston Post and Courier also urges that Sanford stay in office.

"Gov. Mark Sanford ended any speculation about his plans to resign on Sunday when he declared, with finality, that he would remain for the rest of his term. That won't end demands by his legislative critics for his resignation in the wake of his extramarital affair. But it provides a measure of reality about their prospects. Like the governor, they should make the best of a difficult situation," says the newspaper in an editorial.

Last week, two smaller South Carolina newspapers, the Spartanburg Herald-Journal and the Orangeburg Times and Democrat, called on Sanford to resign.


Filed under: Andre Bauer • Mark Sanford • Popular Posts • South Carolina
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Jessica

    So a guy who has repeatedly gone "MIA" – as disclosed by his staff while he was still on the Appalachian trail, but turns out to have been lying to everyone all along – is a good choice for SC?

    stupid is as stupid does...

    June 30, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  2. geneonlbk

    The (G)roup (O)f (P)erverts) racist, bible-thumping rags want their darling father of the year to stay in office even though he stole taxpayer dollars to go see his little sweetie in BA. PUKE!!!!

    June 30, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  3. ANTHONY

    He should resign. A new rule: If a right wing conservative wing nut proclaims Family values, and is opposed to gay marriage then they are either in an adulterous affair or they are gay themselves. It has been proven time after time. These hypocrites will never learn

    June 30, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  4. AndyB

    Hypocrisy at it's finest. Sanford voted to impeach that immoral Bill Clinton saying that his behavior was reprehensible and that he should resign for the good of the country. But now the tables have turned and reprehensible behavior is OK. jeesh

    June 30, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  5. jfs Memhis, Tn

    Based on RED STATE politics that would seem perfectly reasonable.

    June 30, 2009 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    @ Greg in AR, who said ""THE AFFAIR " shows he is not capable of the good judgement it takes to run a state not to mention the rest of the lack of good judgment he has shown"

    No it doesn't. It shows he's a philanderer who thinks with his extra brain. But hey, I suppose all adulterers around the country should be fired since we're supposedly a "krischun nashun"? The focus should be on his actual mis-steps in the performance of his duties...i.e. failures that relate directly to his competence and fitness to govern, like not telling security, his staff or his next-in-line where he was for 5 days, etc. "THE AFFAIR" is just tabloid nonsense that feeds our society's morbid fascination with proof that those on a pedestal can be brought low...it makes us feel better about ourselves to watch someone powerful self-destruct.

    June 30, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  7. citzenjane

    "I would ultimately be a better person and of more service in whatever doors God opened next in life if I stuck around to learn lessons rather than running and hiding down at the farm."
    ---------------------
    Did God open the door in Argentina as well?

    I wonder who is more silly, the family values toting adulterers or those who continue to justify the actions? All you republicans deserve each other.

    June 30, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  8. Educate yourselves before you open your mouth and just let the words fall out

    I am so sick of hearing about this hypocrite and his dirty laundry! I say it's up to the citizens of South Carolina if they want to put up with his garbage or not. If they want to keep him, so be it, they only have themselves to blame. I just wish the national media would shun him like he deserves to be shunned!

    June 30, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  9. Joe in Austin

    The article supports him because they like his politics.

    June 30, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  10. kingssman

    does nobody care that this guy used a federal vehicle to go to the airport, to travel out of country, all on taxpayer funded writeoff too see his mistress without telling anyone and playing "where's sanford?"

    June 30, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  11. Jessica

    Maybe someone can get GOD on speed dial and find it out if it's in his will that Sanford stay? While we got him on the phone, we can ask him about all sorts of other moral questions, starting with Gays...

    I mean, i would think GOD would be bit more distressed by lying, cheating men like Sanford than with gay people loving each other (though, i suspect he'd hold the same contempt for the cheating lying gays as he would the straights, fair is only fair)

    Maybe GOD can shed some light on whether or not we should bring back the scarlet letters?

    June 30, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  12. Fed Up

    Why do people compare this to Clinton. This situation is not a big deal. He messed up, so be it. The reason Republicans rose so much noise in Clinton's situation was not over the fact that he had an affair. It was not that he had the affair in the Oval Office. It was because he LIED UNDEROATH. That my friends is the difference. So please stop using this as a comparison point. Your argument holds no water.

    June 30, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  13. JayW

    Whew, it's so nice to have South Carolina taking the heat instead of Texas for once. And I see their GOP is just as full of hypocrites. Let me add some fuel to keep the light on: remember that this is also the state that proudly flew the Confederate flag over its statehouse and tried to claim it wasn't racist. Now they have a governor who voted to impeach Clinton due to his moral outrage at the prez, yet sees no harm in continuing in office after a year-long adulterous affair. What a hoot of a state. Keep it up, we love the comedy. BTW, before ya'll (Texan for all of you) go lumping us with the South, the majority of Texans consider themselves Westerners.

    June 30, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  14. dominican mama 4 Obama

    ...this horse is sooo dead.

    June 30, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  15. cathy

    I am amazed that Sanford didn't think of God before he committed his sin. Hmmmmmm

    June 30, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  16. Frank Lee

    Stay, Mark.

    Your mere presence is a gift to the Democrats that no money can buy.

    June 30, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  17. Lynn

    So now Sanford tells the truth; his affair started in 2001.....

    June 30, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    "The only reason Bush didn't get impeached was the alternative, Cheney!"

    Truthiness.

    June 30, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  19. gl, From Pittsburgh

    The crazy Religion leaders owned the GOP AND not one of them came out and said a word becasue they are all a bunch of hypocrites. It is Relgions leaders that turn most people off of chuch.

    June 30, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  20. Marty

    I don't see any reason for him to resign when we had a President who did the same thing and was impeached and stayed in office and finished his term. Liberals can't have it both ways. Wake up.

    June 30, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  21. Stu-Florida

    With so many newspapers failing due to the internet and the ecomomy it's no wonder they want him to stay... they need the fodder!

    June 30, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  22. Moonbeam

    Don't they understand that he is not really a governor without Mrs. Sanford? She was a real power behind his entire political career. Mark Sanford is just an empty suit!

    June 30, 2009 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  23. tjpdx

    Sanford should resign, but not because he cheated on his wife. If cheating on your wife constituted loss of employment, millions of American men would be out of work! Instead Sanford should resign because he left his state completely leaderless for 5 days and gave his staff no way to contact him. Essentially he valued a 5-day sexual tryst over the well-being of an entire US state. That is not forgivable.

    June 30, 2009 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  24. Educate yourselves before you open your mouth and just let the words fall out

    To all of you posters from SC who are saying he should go: Exercise your rights as tax-paying citizens of SC and work to make it happen! Just posting your opinion on a blog doesn't cut it.

    June 30, 2009 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  25. cjr

    bet – he's in Argentina before the end of the year! His political career is over – Now we just have to wait for yet another republican falls from the so called state of grace.

    June 30, 2009 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
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