June 30th, 2009
01:51 PM ET
11 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. Dave

    Must be tough to be a republican in South Carolina these days.

    June 30, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |

    This is WHY South Carolina is so ass-backwards. YOU have folks that are so clueless and continue to make excuses, rationalize and minimize Governor Sanford's incompetency.

    This FOOL abandoned his JOB for 5 straight days and would have STAY AWAY LONGER had he not be found out. HELLO?

    Is everyone just stuck on stupid? It's these types of stupidity that gives these politicians "free reign" to do whatever the hell they want.

    The message in South Carolina is that you can LIE, CHEAT and USE TAX PAYERS MONEY, ABANDONED YOUR JOB DUTIES and still keep your JOB and be praised ALL at the same time. LOL

    Wow.... unbelievable. It's no wonder South Carolina is the laughing stock of the world, they have leaders who are nothing but circus clowns.

    June 30, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  3. Joe

    why is this dump a part of the USA?

    June 30, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  4. jerald

    Interesting that he doesn't think he should step down. After all has he not asked that of other cheating politicians? Bloody hypocrite.

    June 30, 2009 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  5. sms29s

    Why should the people of the state of SC provide the training ground for Mark Sanford's journey to being a better person. If I were a taxpayer in that state, I would tell him to take this religious trip on his own dime.

    June 30, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  6. Reformed Republican

    I wonder if those bible thumpers in SC are gonna be as "forgiving" when Sanford comes out of the closet saying he's had a "relationship" with his "spiritual advisor" too...

    June 30, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  7. Kat

    Speeding hardly compares to cheating on one's spouse. Sanford has already demonstrated, however, that HE is untrustworthy, both with the state by disappearing without a care for what might happen in an emergency with no one designated to step in, and most certainly for his singular lack of care and respect for his wife and children, and his own marriage vows.

    How much would you like to bet these papers who are supporting Sanford are run by males... Too many of these guys think with the organ below their belt far more than the one above it. So much for "moral values".

    June 30, 2009 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  8. zippy29

    "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."

    What does God have to do with this...always hiding behind God doesn't work here.


    June 30, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  9. Erik in Real Pennsylvania

    OK, so the Republican Party now approves of deriliction of duty, dishonesty, using taxpayer resources for personal travel, and sexual infidelity. All of these things are OK! Let's enjoy the new tradition of silence from the right wing when anybody else does these things. No more "family values" claptrap and other moralizing on the taxpayer's dime. No more. Shut up.

    June 30, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  10. Shari, NY

    I don't know if I should laugh or cry. The Sanford drama is one thing, but the lieutenant governor's character is also questionable. Then who knows if the governor's staff used an alibi for his disappearance knowing full well that he was on his overseas tryst? The whole bunch of them should be overthrown and have the army take over. After all it smells of third world corruption, doesn't it?

    June 30, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  11. Sharon

    The media had it right when this all started....It was about all about Sanford being MIA as Gov. Now that he's admitted to an affair....it's about the affair. His job should be in jeopardy because his fiduciary responsibility as Governor took 3rd place in his life!!! The affair doesn't surprise me...his ability to lead with GOOD and RATIONAL decisions should be the question.

    June 30, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  12. Rosa Birmingham, AL

    Well if Sanford stays, Spitzer should be reinstated as Governor of New York. What he did was far less irresponsible than what Sanford did. Just shows how hypocritical the GOP is. They are all about family values when it is politically convenient. The Dems don't pretend to be saints yet they punish their own more harshly.

    June 30, 2009 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  13. Honestly

    Throw him under the bus he not only lies he secretly uses citizens money so he can fly south for his sexual satisfaction what a looser.
    If this is the best S.C. has they need to clean house.
    The married Gov. in west that padded the street walkers wages trhat was an employee under him he was cheatingh with throw him under the same bus. that workto be double also needs onder the b us

    June 30, 2009 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  14. Independent_me

    They were all calling for Clinton's head when he had his affair.
    Are Republicans even real humans????

    I am begining to think that they are fiends from another dimension in human form and they are here to cause conflict amongst us humans...

    They exist in all nations... they preach one thing, and practice another... Hypocrites!

    June 30, 2009 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  15. Mike

    I agree. Come election time, the Democrats need a football to kick around and he will be a perfect one. The so-called Family Value Pack. How will be answer to Gay Marriage rights?

    June 30, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  16. Mikey

    And what was God's last plan for you, to leave your 4 boys standing around of Father's Day wondering where their father was at and what was so important that he be away on that day?

    June 30, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  17. joseph

    the best S.C. has to offer as an explanation of why Sanford should stay is because the other guy is WORSE?

    disgusting. I'm ashamed. Greatest country on the planet just got better. YAY!

    June 30, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  18. Shucks

    Well I find it amazing how "god" is opening these doors so frequently for the likes of Sanford and all those others who feel they have to still preach their faith even though they have "sinned". The religion aspect to it is all very interesting if not laughable. I guess until you get caught, religious teachings are very secondary to lifes mortal pleasures. Just goes to show you how the hypocrisy of religion and it's followers manipulate their faith when it is convenient, or when they get caught. Just the fact that they preach they are still living under "gods" influence, shows just how manipulative they are with the publics perception of their indiscretions.

    June 30, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  19. JohnFred

    The State and the state need to realize that speeding and trying to worm out of it by the lieutenant governor is small potatoes compared to the dishonesty of infidelity of public officials and the virtual disappearance of Sanford leaving the state in a position with no leadership. Perhaps the best answer would be an immediate early election. And finally, the electorate in South Carolina needs to get a grip on reality and realize that the Grand No Party offers no leadership or character or class at any level.

    June 30, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  20. Ashley VA

    Im so digusted by Governor's Sanfords deeds, I live in VA and still wrote him an email yesterday asking him to step down.

    June 30, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  21. Zero.

    Yes he should stay! Out of Politics for the next 20yrs.

    June 30, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  22. B.H.

    Get this liar out now! This guy has no judgement whatsoever. He has betrayed every basic quality of leadership and trust.

    June 30, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  23. nedemforlife

    So it seems that, when Sanford was a representative on the Hill from S.C., Bill Clinton should resign for the same reasons that Sanford is being accused of. What HIPROCSY the GOP is in now. It's ok if a GOP member is caught in a sexual scandal, but if you are a dem they hound you for life over the affair. Let's be frank all pols love power, that is why they run for office, but don't ask them to give it up, because they won't. That is why the real power is for the voters to decide. In the next election let the voters keep him in or boot him out.

    June 30, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  24. Tana Roberts

    The infidelity is a matter between the governor and his wife. If he is asked to resign let it be because he's a bad governor, not because he was unfaithful. That said; he should make restitution for any money he cost the taxpayer then get on with the business of running his state to the best of his ability.

    June 30, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  25. Jeff

    Only in South Carolina. Their God is a forgiving God, I suppose.

    June 30, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
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