July 2nd, 2009
02:56 PM ET
14 years ago

Bennett: Sanford needs to stop 'embarrassing himself'

(CNN) - Mark Sanford is "embarrassing himself" and needs to resign as governor of South Carolina, conservative talk radio host and CNN contributor Bill Bennett said Thursday on CNN's American Morning.

Bennett, the latest high profile conservative to call for Sanford's ouster, said it's time for the onetime Republican rising star to ditch politics and focus solely on getting his life back in order.

"I know Mark Sanford. I know him quite well," Bennett said. "He needs to get his life back in order, his marriage back in order. He is embarrassing himself."

"There is the old notion of indecent exposure, usually that refers to somebody showing some skin, and there's another form of indecent exposure. He is telling us way too much," Bennett continued. "We're not interested. He needs to stop and take care of his life."

Bennett also suggested the GOP can easily fill the gap Sanford would leave.

"We have other people," he said. "We have other people who are not only fiscally interesting and sound but also can keep their lives together. "

Bennett's comments come as more than half of the Republicans in the state senate have now called for Sanford to step down, as well as a host of other GOP leaders in the state. Sanford has indicated he does not intend to resign.

"The whole thing is pretty ugly. It needs to stop," Bennett also said.

Filed under: Mark Sanford
soundoff (289 Responses)
  1. Nelson Colorado Springs Co.

    Hang on in there Gov Mark Sanford, the Republicans are upset because two of their onetime Republicans rising star have rock the boat. If conservative talk radio host and CNN contributor Bill Bennett and other ,would stop talking about this, it will go away for now like everything else. Gov Mark Sanford don't resign this to will pass

    July 2, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  2. larry

    Bennett needs to stop embarrassing himself too.

    July 2, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  3. John E Lexington KY

    Sanford thinks his love life is much more interesting than virtually anyone else in the world does.

    Bennett is right but then again a man who lost $5 million gambling needs to look in his own mirror and stop pontificating about anyone else's shortcomings. The truth is the Republican Party and it's leaders destroyed what was good about this country – the ladder up – with their corruption and greed and hearing from any of them is nauseating. I'd suggest if they want to survive – and I hope they don't – they should shut up for a long, long time and hope people forget that they make Nero and the Roman decadents look like frat boys.

    July 2, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  4. Steve McCloud

    CNN. Why the 75 articles about Sanford, and his need to resign, but NOTHING about the fiasco occurring right now in the NY Senate? Dems refusing to take the pledge, counting a Rep. that was passing through the chambers as a vote so they could pass their bill, the Governor refusing to sign the bill. What's up? Surely THAT is newsworthy. You guys are a joke!

    July 2, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  5. jewel

    Mark Sanford's wife would be crazy to take him back after his remarks about his soul mate, and how much he loved her. She should throw the bum out. Also, I'd make him pay back every penny he spend on trips to Argentina. We're broke and these politicans spend our money as if there was no end to it. I've had it.

    July 2, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  6. Steve from TN

    Bennett is right, he should know embarressing well as he is among the no serving, speak with forked tongue gop. both of these dudes combind don't amount to a small hill of beans, much a man. Pathetic.

    July 2, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  7. Tommy

    Y'know Bill, he can be IMPEACHED. y'know, its an option that you and others talked about quite frequently in regards to another political executive in the past...

    July 2, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  8. Obama 2.0

    He is embarasing you, the GOP.

    July 2, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  9. Steve (the real one)

    As a conservative, I fully agree with this assessment! Sanford is embarassing himself, his family, and his state! He needs to step down and LEARN to fall in love with his wife again! This is beyond selfish as he is showing what has the place of importance in his life! It should be his family!

    July 2, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  10. Ken in NC

    I don't often find myself in complete agreement with Bill Bennett, but on this issue with Gov. Sanford, I totally agree that he needs to let go of the politics and work on pulling himself together to save his marriage or to move on out of the country. He needs to do one or the other and we do not need to be in the loop on his communications or decisions. Blood is thicker than water. He has lost the support of the people of South Carolina and it is not retrievable but there may be a possibility of him saving his marriage and family.

    July 2, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. Lance

    Another pearl of wisdom from someone who was addicted to slot machines. I think I'm getting it – family values are for other people...

    July 2, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. Chase

    Very true. Bennet is correct. We have other options and there is no need to duplicate democratic leadership and ignore moral lapses.

    July 2, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  13. beccajo

    If Mrs. Sanford is reconciled with this idiot, she needs to be rushed to therapy immediately, because she will have definitely lost her mind! I cannot imagine the humiliation she and her children must have endured from his endless recitation of his love for his mistress.

    July 2, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  14. Kal Palnicki

    Why ask him to leave unless you ask all the other GOPers who are screwing around to leave also? It seems that the sin is not as important as talking about it in public. If Sanford had only kept quiet, the GOP would still adore him even if they knew about his betrayal of his marriage vows. After all the GOP knew GW Bush betrayed his oath of office and never once asked him to resign. (You know the part about upholding the constitution?)

    July 2, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  15. Don

    Be a gentleman and resign. Don't embarass the Republican party anymore than you already have.

    July 2, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  16. Re-elect Obama-Biden 2012

    for once i agree with this guy. Even if Sanford did not do anything wrong he cannot run South Carolina while scandal plagued.

    July 2, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  17. Bill, Bloominton IL

    The GOP is taking the right step in telling this scumbag to resign. I only wish my party had been more forthright in telling Clinton and Frank to resign.

    July 2, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  18. David Bruce

    This coming from Mr. closet gambler... the Repugnicans are a never ending source of irony and hilarity. Best reality show sitcom on TV bar none!

    July 2, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  19. Kevin in Ohio

    Its time. Bennett is right. Sanford needs to stop acting like Blago and other democrats.

    July 2, 2009 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  20. Robbi

    I concur wholeheartedly. This has become cringeworthy. He needs to stop talking, go away, and get his life together. His personal life is a disaster and he is in no position to be executive of a state. His time would be much better spent with a therapist and then trying to mend his relationship with his children, who must be devastated by all the humiliating public details of hypocrisy. As for his marriage, whether or not that is saved is a private issue. I'd be surprised if his wife still wants him after this public betrayal and humiliation. Too many ugly details have been exposed in the media. Why stay with a man that publicly insists he loves someone else and only stays with you out of duty?

    July 2, 2009 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  21. Butch Stewart

    Why does he have to step down, I wouldn't at my job. Get his life back together? He can be governer and screw up, he can also fix things as governer. Someone wants the seat and this is a way into it. I hope that the man never steps down! Bill Clinton didnt step down! Life happens, let him be. Perfect leaders of a inperfect world? He is not the first and will not be the last to be caught. Get over it!

    July 2, 2009 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  22. Lee

    Your head line said "Top Republican Says Sanford Should Quit." So Bill Bennett, talk show host , is the top Republican. How interesting that the radio waves are running the show here. Sounds to me like no one is running the show.

    July 2, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  23. Bo Perdue

    The governor sounds as if he has gone around the bend. His spiritual advisors and friends needs to get him some professional help. He is trying to clear his soul, but he doesn't need to do it publicly, and he certainly needs to get a grip. Sounds like he really hasn't given up the bimbo.

    July 2, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  24. lynn in NM

    No, he doesn't need to get his marriage in order. He will just do the same thing again. He needs to leave the wife and kids alone to have a good life with a moral upbringing.

    July 2, 2009 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  25. Dave

    He shouldn't stop; it's too much fun!!

    July 2, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
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