Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sin Makes You Stoopid, No. 48570234

Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina vanished for a few days, throwing his state into chaos. Today at a news conference, the truth will out: he wasn't hiking in Appalachia as rumored, he was in Argentina conducting an extra-marital affair. The WSJ live-blogs the conference:

2:31 Finally, here’s where this is going:

“I have been unfaithful to my wife, I have developed a relationship with what started as a dear, dear friend from Argentina… it began very innocently as I suspect these things do… just a casual email back and forth…” the governor says. He says this year it developed “into something more.”

“All I can say is that I apologize,” he adds, before asking for a zone of privacy “if not for me, then for her [Jenny Sanford] and the boys.”

2:32 The governor is now musing on the nature of forgiveness.

2:33 He says that he’s going to take questions, but, first, he announces that he’s going to resign as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, because it’s “the appropriate thing to do.”

2:34 Asked if he is separated from his wife, he gets confused, and says it depends on how that’s defined. He says “yes” in answer to a second question about whether Jenny Sanford knew about the affair before the trip to Argentina – and adds that she’s known for about five months. Then he pivots back to discussing his faith and his efforts to work through this, and starts to lose his composure.

2:36 Asked if he was alone in Argentina, he says twice, “Obviously not.” Now he offers “more detail than you’ll probably ever want,” describing the genesis of his relationship, and pontificates about “a certain irony” in the situation, because of experience counseling his extra-marital partner as she was wondering whether to separate from her husband.

Then he starts to discuss the nature of the “zone of protectiveness” in the distance between the United States and Argentina.

Eager reporters keep trying to interrupt, and yet, he keeps insisting: “Let me finish” the story of their relationship and his conflicted feelings about it.

2:38 He says he spent the last five days of his life crying in Argentina, so he can repeat it back in the United States. It sounds as if he’s saying that he did end the relationship, for reasons ranging from his “fiduciary duty to the people of South Carolina” to “the odyssey we’re all on in life.”

As Bugs Bunny would say, what a maroon!


CMinor said...

I couldn't have put it better than Bugs myself.

This business should keep the gossips out my way busy for months.

I've been wondering what in Hades Sanford coulda been thinking all afternoon.

Did he think nobody would notice he'd dropped out of sight?

Did he think he'd get away with it?

And why in heck did he have to spill his guts to such an extent in that press conference?

What beggars me is, this wasn't a one-nighter with the hot divorcee down the block after a few too many at the neighborhood potluck. This affair took time, planning and long-distance travel. At no time did he pause to reflect that a little extramarital nookie might not be worth the embarrassment and career and family damage that was likely to ensue?

And that's before I get to the moral aspects.

mrsdarwin said...

C, exactly! I recently read someone saying, in regards to the Mel Gibson adultery case, that there but for the grace of God go any of us. And I thought, No! The default is NOT cheating on your wife, because it's hard to cheat. There are details to be arranged and places to work out.

And hello! When you're a governor that means you're in charge of the state and you just can't vanish and expect no one to notice! And did the significance of being gone over Father's Day escape him? Even if his family didn't care for whatever reason, did he think that no one would make hay of that? Did he seriously think that no one would find out? And if he was going down there to break it off, why not break it off from up here and not ruin his career and his marriage and his family in public? Truly, sin makes you stupid.

Some Republican pundit was opining that Sanford shouldn't resign because the next guy might not be a great quasi-incumbent for the Repubs. Who cares about the party? The guy is clearly too stupid or too crazy to govern a state. Get him outta there for the sake of the people of South Carolina.

Anonymous said...

I've also noted that few Republican pundits are calling for Sanford to resign, just as very few are calling for Sen. Ensign to resign (and he, btw, is most assuredly grateful that the Sanford situation displaced him in the headlines), and very few called for Sen. Vitter to resign, either. But quite a few did call for Sen. Craig to resign.

Figuring out what factor made Craig's situation different from the others in the minds of Republican pundits is left as an exercise for the reader.


CMinor said...

I duno, Joel; given the number of philanderers and other degenerates the Dems have actively in office perhaps prominent Repubs are a little tired of the whole "call for resignation" thing. I know I am, though I agree with MrsD that Sanford's actions aren't indicative of executive material and I'd really like just once to see an American Pol take a page from Profumo.

Sanford's a second-termer and I believe has about a year and a half left in office, at any rate (assuming he doesn't get the boot earlier for going AWOL.) As far as future elected office goes, you can probably stick a fork in him. Regardless of whether or not they're calling for resignation, Repubs aren't likely to vote for this guy again.

On a lighter note, I noticed that Stephen Colbert has expressed disbelief that Sanford "did something interesting."