June 24th, 2009
04:32 PM ET
13 years ago

First on the CNN Ticker: Barbour to head RGA

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/23/art.barbour.gi.jpg caption="Barbour will head the RGA."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour has assumed the chairmanship of the Republican Governors Association, CNN has learned.

Barbour immediately takes over as head of the national Republican campaign organization following South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford’s announcement he was leaving the post. Sanford acknowledged Wednesday that he had an extramarital affair with a woman in Argentina.

“The news revealed today hurts all of us who have gotten to know Governor Sanford over the years and so it is with regret that the RGA accepted Governor Sanford’s resignation as chairman,” Barbour said in a statement obtained by CNN that will be distributed Wednesday afternoon. “While this news is deeply disappointing, I also know it’s important to remain focused on the future and Governor Sanford’s resignation allows him and us to do just that.

Barbour added: “The RGA has an important task over the next two years. I am committed to seeing it through and confident we will succeed.”

Nick Ayers, the RGA’s executive director, expressed disappointment about Sanford’s revelation.

“While I am personally disappointed in today’s revelation, I also know that it’s important for both Governor Sanford and the RGA to move forward as quickly as possible,” Ayers said in the forthcoming statement. “Therefore we accepted his resignation this afternoon.

“However, the RGA is fortunate that Governor Haley Barbour was in line to become RGA Chairman, a position he assumed today. As a former RNC chairman and one of the best governors in the country, no one is better positioned to takeover as RGA chairman than Governor Barbour.”

Filed under: Haley Barbour
soundoff (133 Responses)
  1. Kay

    He left his post as Governor for 5 days to visit his mistress in Argentina and told noone, not even his staff. If I left my job for 5 days and did not tell my boss I would be fired. This man is a digrace to South Carolina and needs to resign. So much for family values.

    June 24, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  2. bettie

    Barbour probably is having an affair, too. Next?

    June 24, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  3. lf

    Tough job ahead, Governor Barbour, With your energy and dedication you may appear similar to 'Haley's comet' for quick and lightning speed with your new responsibilities to lead the GOP into new realms of great splendor.

    Best wishes!!

    June 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  4. IndyVoter

    My Fellow Democrats:

    PLEASE don't start attacking Gov. Sanders during this time. Kicking someone while they are down is neither noble nor brave. Even though some Republicans have proven that they are not, WE are better than that....Also, don't start knocking the concept of family values. Its not just a Republican issue. This country needs strong families and we ALL need to encourage faithfulness and honesty in our marriages, jobs, political and economic dealings, etc.

    I'm just saying.

    – An Ardent Obama Supporter

    June 24, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  5. Paulie

    Why does the GoP even bother anymore? They preach family values yada yada....but end up making the liberals, whom they bash for their values, look like the saints of the planet. Please America, let's end this ridiculous 2 party system and elect people rather than ideologies!

    The religious right has proved time and again no one can live up to the standards they claim to live by.

    June 24, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  6. John

    The things that bothers me, is that all these guys "were for the defense of marriage act"...and ultimately the one that their marriage needed defense from was themselves. What a bunch of hypocrites!!

    June 24, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  7. Bill or Vin from Philly

    another Republican hypocrite takes over, I just love it, see how long he last??

    June 24, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  8. rick

    If you made this stuff up, nobody would believe it.

    June 24, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  9. Jed

    Look at Barbour's past and look at what all he has done for the state of Mississippi and for the country for that matter before you smash him purely based on the fact that he leads Mississippi.

    June 24, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Steve A. , New Braunfels , Texas

    Barbour? Mississippi? The largest employer in the state is the Federal Goverment. Fact. This may not be a good choice but it could be that he is the only person that would take the job.

    June 24, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  11. J Wills

    big papa June 24th, 2009 3:22 pm ET

    …confederacy gone wild!


    LOL!! Hysterical !!

    June 24, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  12. Ann

    Why don't you ask to people of Mississippi what this republican governor has done for us............easy answer.....NOTHING!

    June 24, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  13. Victory

    Boy, that was a kick in the teeth to his wife and kids by running off to his girlfriends on Fathers day weekend. How many old white guys do they have in that GOP!!

    June 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  14. Jed

    I am from Mississippi and Governor Barbour has done so much for this state. Remind you he handled Hurricane Katrina better than anyone. He has helped bring business and jobs to the state. He has brought better publicity to the state than ever before. And, don't forget, he played a significant role in bringing the Presidential debate to the University of Mississippi

    June 24, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  15. Jen

    Oh. Another hypocrite Republican. Look at how shocked I am. Look! =I

    June 24, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  16. John

    The only difference I see with this one, as opposed to other "affairs" is that he abandoned his job, basically. I know if I left my job unnanounced for 5 days, the job wouldn't be there waiting for me when I returned.

    June 24, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  17. pugdog

    'Just a good ol boy...never meaning no harm'

    June 24, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  18. Gene

    I love how libs assume all repubs are hypocritcs because of "family values" yet there fellow libs get off scott free in their minds...

    June 24, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  19. Dean

    From bad to worse.

    June 24, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  20. NVa Native

    Another hillbilly bafoon with rocks in his mouth, now we'll hear his garbling of the english language even more than before.
    It looks like the real threat to "marriage" is the Republican party. You could say the Republicans are our country's greatest threat to common sense morality ~ claiming the moral high ground with "family values" when all the while they are crawling in the goo ~ Craig, Foley, Abermoff, Delay, Cunningham, Ensign, Ollie North, Allen, Schrock, Swaggart, etc., etc.,
    Is he really related to Rush?

    June 24, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  21. One By One

    Haley Barbour ...Well he won't cheat on his ...cuz nobody wants him
    (BOSS HOG)

    June 24, 2009 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  22. Janice in Mississippi

    Let's see; one rattlesnake just got its tail chopped off, so they send in one of the copperheads.


    June 24, 2009 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  23. B.H.

    Yet another southern old white good ol boy.

    Icons for the GOP..

    June 24, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  24. Priscilla California

    Mr. Pure as the driven snow Gov. should resign.If he betrayed his family what will he do for the people of SC. Oh, that's right he will leave the country and not tell anyone. I wonder if his mistress has a child for him. He has known her for eight years and she has two children. Makes one wonder. He should also review his condemning of Pres. Clinton. Looks like he has taken that same road. The Repubs, the party of family morals,what a joke.

    June 24, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  25. Al

    It's not the affair that bothers me. It is the fact that he didn't tell anyone where he was going and how long he would be gone. He is the head of an entire state! His family values are definitely depleted but his work ethic is bankrupt. I think he has another letter of resignation to write.

    June 24, 2009 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
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