June 24th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Should S.C. Governor Sanford be removed from office?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford admits he's been having an affair with a woman from Argentina - which is where he's been for the past week. This comes after days of speculation on the whereabouts of the Republican governor, ever since he went AWOL last Thursday.

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford - and father of 4 - has admitted to cheating on his wife.

Sanford's staff said Monday that he was hiking along the Appalachian Trail, where Sunday was nude hikers day. That's where he told his staff he might be going. I wonder if he knew it was nude hikers day. Probably not.

As late as yesterday, Sanford's wife told CNN she still hadn't heard from her husband. Sanford has four sons - and was away from his family over Father's Day weekend... Charming man.

Sanford announced he's resigning as head of the Republican Governors Association. He was also once thought to be a contender for the 2012 presidential nomination. Governor Sanford is not what the Republican Party needs at this moment - or ever.

It's one thing to have an affair; but when you're the chief executive officer of the state, you can' t just disappear without telling anyone where you're going - let alone leave the country for almost a week.

Here’s my question to you: Should South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford be removed from office?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

David from Texas writes:
Yes, not for his affair, but for allowing the people of South Carolina not to have a chief executive to turn to. What if there had been a natural disaster, a riot in the streets, explosion at a factory? He would be removed at major company as CEO by the Board of Directors and he should now be removed by the South Carolina legislature.

Sylvia from Tampa writes:
Yes, as should have David Vitter, John Ensign and Larry Craig. They all say they're sorry and that's supposed to be the end of it. The Senate Republicans applauded John Ensign yesterday. What's wrong with this picture? Since there appears to be no consequences for this deplorable behavior, it continues. It's disgusting!

Shirley from Alabama writes:
Yes, Gov. Mark Sanford is a dirty, dirty man. He should have been booted out long ago, not just because he cheated on his wife, but mainly because he is cheating the people of South Carolina. Where did they find him, and why do the southern states that are poorer then dirt keep electing these Republicans that keep them poor? He is pathetic.

Eis writes:
Here is yet another hypocrite who casts stones at others while running to South America to have an affair. I am not surprised. He was in Congress during the Clinton impeachment over an affair. At least he wasn't caught in the bathroom at the Ezezia Airport in Argentina.

Sharon writes:
He essentially abandoned the state that elected him governor to diddle some woman in Argentina, leaving no one – not his staff, not his wife, NO ONE – knowing how to reach him. He should scrape the bottom of the barrel and see if he can find a shred of integrity and resign.

Brian from Connecticut writes:
Jack, Leave him where he is, in the spotlight, as the latest of those supposedly religious, supposedly moral, supposedly family-value-oriented wealthy men, who don't give a damn about the people he supposedly represents.

Filed under: Government
soundoff (124 Responses)
  1. Doctor Sharon in Chicago, IL

    Oh, yes, please! But I have to thank him for making Rod Blago look like he may loose the title of "Sleazeball Governor of the Year."

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  2. Big John

    Just another Republican hypocrite. Why don't these losers just shut up and let the Democrats and the Greens fix the country. Republicans are just as bad as those thugs in Iran. Sanford needs to go. All the Republicans need to go.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  3. Monica

    I love it! "Clown", "Tart", "Deathwish". You hit it on the nose Jack. The GOP continues to undermine their wrap. Of course, he should be removed from office. Hopefully he'll step down first. What an imbesile. He could have done a much better job covering up his affair. I knew he was cheating when this story was first reported. He's done. He can go join John Edwards and the rest of 'em, in hiding somewhere.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  4. Barry

    All politicians are cheaters so I pretty much expect all of them to fall from grace. But, the real issue is one of true lack of judgement by leaving the country for days on end. This guy has an oath of office which requires his full attention during his political term. He should go for this reason.

    Ironically, had he participated in the nude hiker day fesitivities, he would likely keep his job. Because at least he would have been in state where he was able to fulfill his duties as governor.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  5. Robert G from Louisiana

    If he only had an affair and that was it, then I would say that he shouldn't be removed from office. The fact that he was so irresponsible that he would leave his office without telling anyone where he was going for almost a week speaks volumes about where his priorities where in terms his handling of state affairs(no pun intended). The only option is for him to be removed from office. He can never come back from this in my opinion. Any thought of running for President in 2012 have gone out the window for him. I feel sorry for his family.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  6. Chris DeJong

    Governor Sanford has no choice but to resign after leaving the state AND the country without arranging for response to an emergency. He should be charged with dereliction of duty. His arrogance related to vetoing several good bills passed by the South Carolina legislature this year as well as his releuctance to taking federal stimulus funds belie his incompetence and arrogance.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  7. John from NY

    This is a sad day for South Carolina ! We here in New york know how it feels to have a governor spitzer in a place of leadership ! This man should be ashamed of himself ! He is supposed to represent his state in a proper manner and instead he shows them that he weak willed , cant be faithful to his wife and doesnt have the common respect of which the office he holds demands , to let someone at least know the truth ! If he runs for president we are all in deep hog droppings !

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  8. Patti

    YES YES YES our so-called "governor" should be removed from office–the sooner, the better!!

    He's already created a state-wide crisis in the fight over whether or not we should receive federal stimulus money–as one of the poorest states in the nation, we need it desperately.

    But Sanford is a gazillionaire, and he's standing on "principal" (haha) and fought against accepting aid to the bitter end. This did NOT make him popular with anyone!!

    Now he's LEFT THE COUNTRY, unreachable in case of emergency–we don't know if he's dead or alive–and he's with his ARGENTINE MISTRESS?!

    Please please, Mark Sanford–do everyone a favor and RESIGN!!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  9. Clay

    The governor should absolutely be removed. It is sad that we have such devastatingly dreadful politicians leading this country right now. I do not believe that you can separate ones job as a leader from their moral and ethical persona. If you will cheat on your wife and sons, you will cheat on your constituents and your state.
    Killeen, Texas

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  10. chris in SC

    A parent would be prosecuted if they left their children alone....OUR governor basically left the state alone, not being able to react properly had there been an emergency. You have to question their intelligence or ego.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  11. Scott

    Dear Mark Sanford,
    Please resign.
    South Carolina

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  12. Rosann

    This guy should be toast. Of course, he should be removed from office. When are we going to demand that our public officials exhibit common decency and uphold the moral standards which they so readily impose on others?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  13. D.

    YES! He has a lot of nerve leaving the state/country for five days not
    letting anying one know.

    remove him Now!!!!!
    what a jerk.Was it worth it ? iguess it was.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  14. gil amspaugh

    Jack, Not only should he resign as head of the republican governor's assiciation but, also, as governor of South Carolina. What in the world was he thinking? A great governor, a great husband, and a great father-NOT ! ! I say that he should just take a HIKE

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  15. Jeff Clarkson (Houston)

    I live in Texas, so it's really not my business. BUT why do some of these guys hide behind God when they get caught? It's cowardice.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  16. Terry


    Of course he should be gone. I don't really care if he's cheating on his wife, and I wouldn't be outraged if he had gone hiking, but leaving the country and not putting anyone else in the state to have the power to be governor is just plain stupid. If this is how much he respects the people of South Carolina and his job as governor, he should have resigned today! Or maybe Jack he was thinking more about getting lucky then keeping his job. Another dangerous mistake.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  17. Al from Dallas

    Why I'm not surprised to see one more of these self righteous hypocrites doesn't practice what he preaches. He still has so much nerve to bring god in his nonsense explaination after he got caught red-handed.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  18. Michael of Alexandria, VA

    It surprises me that Mark Sanford vanished while active governor to have this affair. I don't know if he should be impeached for this, but certainly he should be censored and I would doubt he has any 2012 chances as a credible presidential candidate. Then again you never know, remember that former Arkansas governor Bill Clinton???

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  19. Ryan Spector


    Absoultely! When your cheating results in a complete disregard for the office your holding, its time to go!

    New York

    June 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  20. Arti Bhatt

    Why this is even a question? yes of course he should. he lied, he cheated, and he hurt many people...but then again, he is part of the US govt.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  21. Sandra

    He should definitely be removed, not for the affair, but for leaving the state for nearly a week without arranging for proper coverage of his duties in his absence. The affair is disgusting, but his behavior as governor is more so . . . MUCH more so. Shame on him and the many hypocrites like him.
    - Sandra, Colorado Springs, CO

    June 24, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  22. bob

    As Sarah Palin would say, "You betcha!"

    June 24, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  23. Don from Wisconsin

    You know Jack, people in general are very forgiving because well, everyone makes mistakes. But a critical mistake is lying while your asking forgiveness. You only truly get one crack at that and he sorely failed. Adios to the Governor.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:21 pm |

    remove him, you can't run off and leave your wife and the state for an outside love affair.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  25. Gov. N

    yes he should be force out of office. i am a true democrat and he stands no chance beating obama in 2012 anyways. he just left the state and lied. Impeach Him

    June 24, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  26. Katie Rodwell

    The Governor should resign. He has brought shame to my great state. There are many oustanding public servants that certainly do not behave in such an aberrant fashion. The Speaker of the House, Bobby Harrell, has tried to work with this man for years, only to hit a brick wall. Other fine elected officials have struggled to work this Governor as well. I am tired of the shinanigans.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  27. Ray

    Of course Sanford should resign as Governor. Not because of the affair, but for dereliction of his duties as Governor. But, perhaps he was just trying to bolster his credentials as a future Presidential candidate. He now can say he has experience in Foreign Affairs.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  28. Ricardo

    Even though I'm Jamaican, I felt I had to comment because it's not just the South Carolina Governor, it politicians in general. What makes them think that they can treat the offices we entrust to them with such contempt? I wonder if he even stopped to consider what would have happened if there was a crisis in the state while he was away selfishly pleasuring himself. Based on my limited knowledge of that state's constitution, it would appear that important decisions such as deploying troops must come from the governor. His actions were reckless, selfish and suggest utter contempt for the people of that state. He should absolutely be removed from office.

    Kingston, Jamaica.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  29. Lauri, Baltimore MD

    Jack, you're absolutely right to bring up the fact that the state of South Carolina was left leaderless while this pathetic excuse for a man put aside safety and well-being of the people he swore to serve, not to mention his family who must live with this horror for the rest of their lives. This person doesn't deserve to be a garbage collector for his state, let alone be the people's governor. Until such time as he can be removed from office, his new theme song could be "Don't Cry For Me Argentina".

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  30. Sandee Fields

    Oh gee why? Isn't this the status quo? It seems like the minority in office are those who have some morals...who when they said "I do" didn't mean "I will" if I get the chance... to humiliate my family and the office I swore to uphold. Sad that this generation of young people don't have to many hero's to emulate.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  31. Nancy Gray-Patoka

    Yes, in my humble opinion, Gov. Mark Sanford should take a permanent "hike", the sooner, the better.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  32. Jennifer from Chicago IL

    Yes. But only because he went on hiatus with the responsibility of an entire state that is counting on him. I could care less about the affair. That has no bearing on anyone elses life. Even getting caught in an affair shouldnt matter. Leaving to a foriegn country without telling anyone, however, is an irresponsible choice. What if he were needed while he was gone and couldnt get back? Worse yet, how many resources were wasted "searching" for him?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  33. Eric Ibarra

    Sandford should be removed from office immediatly, the fact that a governor would leave his state without telling anyone speaks about his character,frankly its situations like this one that makes me lose faith in the elected officials of this country. Furthermore the fact that this guy was being considered for the 2012 presidential election is SCARY!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  34. Karen Fein

    How can Sanford NOT resign? Turning his back on his family is one thing and they'll have to deal with that. Turning his back on his state is something that cannot be excused. If he's this much of a fool, who would want him to be their governor? Get him out of there!
    Karen Fein
    Phoenix, AZ

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  35. Sharron

    Absolutely – he was AWOL and we all know what that gets any "soldier"

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  36. Ann

    Of course he should resign. This so-called "Christian" "family values" Republican is nothing but a slime-ball. He should give his wife and children a big settlement and go on his merry way in disgrace. One question he didn't answer and nobody asked – Is the affair over?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  37. Eileen Peabody MA

    Jack, this is a foolish question...Yes he should be removed from the Govenor's office. After all, his job is to oversee the needs of the state of South Carolina. That isn't easily done from Argentina.

    On the other hand....hopefully the state will arrange for repayment to the taxpayers for all his jonts to Argentina along with whatever treats he has provided for his little spark!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  38. Mike Seamark

    Hi Jack:
    If Gov. sanford had a spark of humility and dignity, he would resign his office immediately. It is one thing, a private matter, to be unfaithful to one's spouse. Affairs happen although they are regretable. But to betray the trust of the SC people, to leave the country without telling anyone where he was going? That is a betrayal of the duties of the office he holds and a betrayal of the people that he serves.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  39. Jon, Atlanta Ga.

    Apparently Governor Sanford didn't listen to President Obama Father’s Day Message.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  40. Mary Curtis

    Can you tell me why this information requires national coverage? Have you no idea how absurd Americans look in the eyes of the world. No one condones this type of shameful behaviour; but for goodness sake put a lid on it. Leave this poor family alone .

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  41. Karl from SF, CA

    The WHO should look into declaring a pandemic of Republican Hypocrisy. Can’t Republicans keep their pants on? To answer the question: Yes he should be removed if he doesn’t have the decency to resign as governor, but much for his decency on that count, too, I guess.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  42. Christopher


    As a South Carolinian I can forgive him for his marital infidelity but I cannot forgive him for up and leaving the state without informing any of his staff or enacting any plan for a transfer of power. What if an emergency had occurred while he was abroad? His absence could easily have led to a loss of life due to slow emergency response. I can tell you one thing: if I left my job for a week with no warning I would fired the next day for sure. Double standards, anyone?

    Christopher R.
    Greenville, SC

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  43. sam

    here goes another republican critic who blindly criticizes the present administration in every step of the way. i hope every reasonable person examine the situation before supporting criticizing the president and the current administration in their mission to help the country. this guy was nothing but another selfish guy who tries to cover up his mistakes while pointing fingers at others. way to go republicans.......

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  44. wally holley

    Yes he should go. Not so much for the infidelity, but for the way he left thestate in limbo, and showed total disrespect for the power and position he holds as chieft executive of SC. If he has no better control of his hankerings, and gives total priority to playing footsies with a floozie than he does to the welfare and security of his State he should be immediatley relieved of his duties as Governor

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  45. Joe Alex

    Dear Jack,
    Of course Gov. Sanford should be removed from office. Actually, he should do the honorable thing and resign. Of course, if he were a democratic governor, or for that matter, a democratic president, he could simply deny "having had sexual relations with that woman", and that would be the end of it. But as the party that is pro-life, and which supports traditional marriage and traditional Judeo-Christian values, we must hold ourselves to higher standards.
    Joe Alex

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  46. H. Suarez

    Absolutely. Real quick fast and in a hurry. Alot of the people we put in office are not taking these positions seriously. They do not respect us, there position's, and even their spouses. Maybe they need to be made an example of.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  47. william

    Yes I think so. Tell me Jack why do men in politics feel like they can cheat and keep their jobs in public office but we never get reports like this about the women in public office cheating on their husbands.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  48. CT Rich

    When are our elected officials going to realize the 'outsourcing' is rarely a good idea.

    A gov. who goes AWOL certainly should be removed. What would happen to his brother gov. employees – the military – if they pulled such a stunt?

    Give Ole Sparky the heave ho!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  49. Milagros

    Well iam not sure but for the people of SC they should be the ones to make that decision. Maybe it is best, but who are we to say?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  50. Patrick Crabtree

    Heck, NO, don't throw him out, Jack!!! Do they have oil in Argentina? Maybe Sanford somehow rates high with the fairer sex down there and he could possibly charm the Argentinian President's wife. So let's keep this scoundrel and turn it into lemonade (or oil) for us all!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  51. Brenda Hale

    I don't know, did President Clinton get removed from office when this happened to him? Did John Edwards? Also, curious if CNN referred to Monica as a "Tart?"

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  52. Chris

    Gov. Sanford should be asked to resign or face impeachment. This is the straw that broke the camel's back. He is a disgrace to the Republican party and an embarrassment to the state of South Carolina.

    South Carolina

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  53. Missy

    Yes, he should be remove from office for leaving the country without letting any officialknow where he was going. Adultry is between him,his wife and God.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  54. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Why Jack, Barney Frank is still in the house, and he had a gay prostitution ring operaiting in his home.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  55. kickindustcowboy

    Abosolutely he should be removed from offfice, not becuase of the affair; but because he failed his oath of office and he failed the people of S. C. His affiar is his personal business, but disappering to Argentina for a week is a maglignant neglect of the power and office entrusted to him, and a complete disregard of the public's busness. His wisdom judement in serious public matters must be called into question

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  56. john j. grimes Watertown, Ma.

    It doesn't take a PhD to watch Gov. Sanford and realize he is lying thru his teeth. Let the people of South Carolina, especially his wife, determine his future. One thing for sure, Jefferson Davis only wanted to secede from the Union and not the country for a long week-end in South America.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  57. Milagros

    . Maybe it is best, but who are we to say?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  58. Marty (idaho)

    Probably. Will he? No! What is most disturbing is that it is these guys (Vitter, Ensign, Sanford and the like), that are making decisions on others civil right to "marry" based on THEIR argument of saving "the Sanctity of Marriage!" These guys stomp on, spit on, and pillage "the sanctity of marriage!! They should not be in positions of making laws that affect others, period!!

    Why is it that a citizen that is qualified and wanting to serve our country, cannot because of their sexual orientation, when these guys can be screwing everything not nailed to the floor and still be allowed to serve in office?

    I have been married to the same woman for over 20 years and never thought about cheating and never would. You want to cheat? get a divorce? These tools have PhD's in hypocrisy !


    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  59. Ed Tant in Athens, GA

    Yes! If I left my job for nearly a week without so much as a phone call to the boss, I'd be fired for sure!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  60. Nancy M Atlanta Georgia

    Has Gov. Sanford not learned to be honest yet after all these other politicians and their cheating ways? He needs to step down because we need honest people in office. He needs to go back to the basics and learn how to be honest.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  61. Skip/ Wauconda,IL

    Jack, any elected official who thinks he or she can just leave their office
    and not tell his staff, family or next in charge, and then lies about his or her whereabouts should be thrown out of office.

    What kind of leadership are all of these Republicans attempting to
    portray? Lying about locations is bad enough, but putting all of the people being represented leaderless is total crap.

    This trend of cheating on spouses shows no moral fiber what so ever.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  62. Alex K., Chicago, IL

    If Sanford believes that marriage is a sacred bond between one man and one woman, and he cannot live according to his own beliefs, then he should absolutely step down as governor.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  63. Johnnice

    Another GOPer bites the dust.....Hypocrits... I guess this is President Obama's fault too...

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  64. Matt in Florida

    As an independent, I see it hypocritical of a high ranking official in his own party to go do what he did and supposedly represent the morales and values he holds personally and those of his own party. It is another stumbling roadblock that further sets back a largely impaired political group. I pride myself in my political independence and find it ridiculous that the Democratic party should be the "one party" system we need to reach social parity and equality in this country. If the RNC really wants to get back to its roots and help resurface as a party that represents the people, then Michael Steele would call on this ignoramous electorate to step down.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  65. Ray

    Stamford, CT

    Jack: I think if it can be proved that he funded this affair with state funds he should be impeached and removed. If not, then he should remain. The silver lining here is that the Republican field for 2012 is now down by two. And that's something we can all be happy for 🙂

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  66. Pfeff

    Yes, he should be removed from office. While the affair is blatant hypocrisy on his actions and viewpoints of the past, that is his family's problem, not his state's. He should be removed because it is not acceptable to abandon office without letting anyone know, especially in a state where nobody knows who is in charge.

    Franklin, Wisconsin

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  67. Wm. Burroughs Myrtle Beach, South Carolia

    Although the demography has changed over the years-but South Carolina is still in the Bible Belt. Most may forgive him as the good Lord tells us, But his days are numbered!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  68. Katherine Lott

    At first I refused to believe it. A Southern Republican Governor leaves the country to South America on Father's Day to see a mistress. It's just too ridiculous and dramatic.

    Should he be kicked out of office? YES!!! It makes no sense to have the head executive of a State leave the country (for an absurd reason) without telling anyone. (His wife kicked him to the couch for a while, but why would he actually GO to the mistress to tell her it was off?)

    If his judgement was that distorted by his personal troubles, then I'd hate to see him as a President. Is this a following of McCain suspending HIS campaign for a week?

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  69. Lee

    He should be removed. If it were only an affair, I'd say let the voters decide, but the fact that he left the country without informing the Lt. Governor and other officials is a gross dereliction of duty. His lack of judgment reflects very poorly on his ability to govern.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  70. Michael of Alexandria, VA

    I don't think he should be removed from office. On the Democrat side Bill Clinton was elected president after admitting to an affair and on the Republican side Rudy Giuliani became the hero of 9/11 after admitting to an affair in 2000. Mark Sanford may become the greatest president ever one day. I am not saying what he did is right in anyway and rather it is shameful. Yet at the same time he is going through a trial as all of us do, even politicians. Just as Bill Clinton remained a successful president after the failed impeachment, Mark Sanford should remain a successful governor after his affair.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  71. Victor

    Moral values, being a good christian, these are the core values of the Republican party. This is why this party should be thrown in the trash can because of this hypocrisy being broadcast by the republican who degrade those who disagree with their way of thinking. Yes, I definitely believe he should be impeached, Royally!!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  72. E. McNair

    If Gov. Sanford isn't thrown out of office for this, then there's something serious wrong with the state of South Carolina in particular and the US in general. Not only did he betray his wife and children, he betrayed his constituency in South Carolina as well as possibly compromised national security. What if, while in Argentina, someone with hostile intent toward the US had decided to hold him hostage? Someone that irresponsible would be unemployable in the public sector; there should be the same standard in the government. If Sanford's the new face of the Republican party, then God help us all!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  73. James Phillips/ NV

    Yes, he should get his "ducks in a row", be a Southern gentleman and, do SC right by stepping down, allowing SC to move forward. Pulling a disappearing act on the state for his own interest, especially leaving the country, for his position, is uncalled for.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  74. Aubrey Lee

    The governor should step down, now. He betrayed his wife, family and the people of South Carolina. In this critical time with financial issues creating a crisis on multiple fronts, no state needs the distraction of an AWOL governor who apparently has valued this affair over his family and his responsibility to his office.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  75. Robert Monda

    Yes, Gov. Sanford has to go. Moved to tears during his press conference, and until recently on the fast track with the GOP's establishment, the Governor has lost all credability, has become just another wrecked reputation followed by newspapers picked up at the check out counter of the supermarket, and has moved into the inevitable line for the tell-all confessional book deal.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  76. Armando

    Who cares? So this govenor has an affair. Are there not other things going on in the world? I for one am sick of turning on CNN and seeing this story over and over again.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  77. Katie in Iowa

    That's up to the people of South Carolina. Personally, I couldn't care less what a consenting adult does on their free time, but if I was from South Carolina, I would be extremely upset if my governor left for a week without warning. The people voted for him to solve their problems, not to go on plane rides to Argentina. That's the real outrage.
    I would never want to be a governor from a Conservative state. I'm not saying this about all people who live in a Red State, but quite a few of them act like twelve-year -old children whenever sex is mentioned. It's rather hilarious.
    I'll be laughing it up here in Iowa, where we tend to act like adults.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  78. Demarcus Jackson from Columbia, TN

    I know that Dems also commit adultery and do stupid things in their personal lives, but this will always hit Republicans harder because they have essentially wrapped their political agenda around the right-wing, conservative, extremist religious right. Because NO ONE is perfect, these family values Republicans will always inevitably fall from grace and suffer the consequences harder. Sanford has spoken openly against Gay marriage and has affirmed the sanctity of marriage-give me a break!!! He is just one more example of Republican hypocrisy. I am not surprised by this news and I do not feel sorry for him. I feel sorry for his wife and children, but I bet you that his wife will stay with him and that is her right, but if she does stay with him I think that it only sends the message to these rouge husbands that this behavior is okay and acceptable and excusable.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  79. Jim Boyles

    Yes, he should resign; not only for the deception to his staff; his family and the citizens of SC but for the unanswered questions about use of state owned vehicles, travel expenses and time when he was with this other woman. While the state of SC is undergoing the highest unemployment rate in the nation and its poverty rate also very high this Governer has been off with another woman. He has runined this State's tax structure and tried to destroy the school system in favor of vouchers; he stated that he wanted to take the stimulas money only to pay off the state debt; which he caused during the favoring the rich tax plan passed by the rich legislators here in SC. No; not resign; he should be impeached.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  80. tim buck

    Jack, I am so sick of the hypocritical philosophy preached by the Republicans. The party is out here preaching these lofty moral principals, castigating Democrats as evil-doers not fit for office. Yet how many Republicans have fallen from grace due to their extramarital affairs or gay liaisons, and we’re all supposed to just excuse it as some error of judgment and press on. It is sickening and so revealing that even they can’t live up to their moral lectures. Maybe it’s time for them to face reality, and yes Sanford should be removed. They would ask the same of any Democrat.

    Evans, GA

    June 24, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  81. Sandie, SC

    Before deciding if he should be removed from office there are a few questions that need to be answered:
    – how many times has he left the country without anyone knowing how to contact him. Once is an "oops", more than that is dereliction of duty as governor.
    – how has he paid for his little jaunt(s)? If it's with state money, he should be immediately removed from office and required to pay everything back with interest.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  82. Lynn D

    Remove him. He left his constituents – who put him in office – vulnerable while he put his own selfish desires first. Very immature and certainly shows him as less than a brainiac. His wife's comments – scripted as they were – were embarassingly ridiculous and probably backfired on her. As we know, the brightest and best-qualified rarely run for public office, so this is what we wind up with: imbeciles.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  83. william

    nancy love the hike idea

    what a creative writer you are

    love it

    bet that one makes it on the air

    June 24, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  84. shams

    Not if he is doing a good job of governance. He can sleep with all the girls in this world... that is his personal problem and his wife can decide to stay or quit.

    The voters will appraise his performance in office and decide in the next election. Removing men from office because they cheat on their wives should be discouraged. I never heard elected official sworn to be honest to his/her spouse as a condition for taking the job or performance.

    If we have capable, intelligent and gifted men, we should ruin them because they failed to be honest to their wives. No man is infallible to women... they are our mothers and they know what to do to get us as they have done to most powerful men in the past.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  85. Lee Ann Rogers from Knoxville TN

    I can imagine Sarah Palin uncorking a bottle of champagne tonight. She will be celebrating that the pool is getting smaller for the repub. primary for the 2012 election.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  86. Gina

    Indeed yes, Mark Sanford needs to resign from the Governor's office. He should not delay and needs, instead, to work on repairing his relationship with his wife. She is definitely a class act and frankly, deserves better than Mark Sanford. I, as a South Carolinian already knew that he thought first about himself rather than what was important for the people of this State when he fought against almost 100% of the people here about accepting our share of the stimulus package. Still, I believed he cared about his family, but again, he only thought of himself and would still be carrying on with this married woman in Argentina if he hadn't been found out. Please Governor Sanford, do your State and your family some good and resign.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  87. Dexter

    YES! He should have done that before he left for South America.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  88. Cala

    Although I agree that Gov. Sanford acted immorally and irresponsibly, I believe that his secretive trip was an effort to shield his family from further hurt. Sometimes when we are in a bad situation we don't always make the right choices and Gov. Sanford made a wrong choice. I believe his first priority at this time should be his family. If that means giving up his governorship then so be it; however, if he is still able to complete his obligation to the citizens of south carolina then he should be able to do so. I'm sure if there was an emergency they[his staff] or someone would have known how to contact him.Just because they hadn't heard from him doesn't mean they couldn't get in touch with him! May thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  89. Richard From NJ

    Richard From NJ

    Hello Mr.Cafferty I do believe the governor should be removed from office. Rules are rules and when you break them there is a consequences. However, Watching his public confession He seems remorseful and he should be forgive. What the governor did is been going on every single day in America and very few is remorseful. I hope is wife do what is best for her and her children but, keep in mind that we are all humans and therefore we make mistakes.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  90. Gale King

    I feel that Gov. Sanford of SC should be removed from–or should personally resign–as governor of South Carolina. What he did is agregious; not only dropping out of sight from his office and his family (during Father's Day weekend), but out of the country as well - in Argentina for almost a week with his "ladyfriend." He's certainly his own worst enemy. He should try to explain his actions to his wife and sons, resign from his office as soon as possible, and perhaps return to his "honey" in Argentina who means so much to him. ly. He's a disgrade to all men, and I feel sorry for his family. He should not be on the government payroll any more that's for sure!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  91. cynthia gutfranski


    So should ENSIGN!!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  92. Sharon

    Yes, I believe he should be removed from office. Because he left the State of SC, went to another country, and did not notify his Lt. Governor or staff.

    His affair is a personal matter between him and his wife. They need the ability to restore their relationship with minimal distraction,

    June 24, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  93. John Herring

    South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford must resign as the South Carolina governor. He is a two faced hypocrite who is absolutely not fit to govern. There is little doubt that he panders to the religious right. There is no doubt that he insults the intelligence of all those who voted for him because he waves the religious flag.

    Get him out of there!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  94. Stacy

    But of course Jack... but of course. When a man goes away without informing his wife of his whereabouts, it's easy to deduce that he's got plans with someone else but when it's a governor who LEAVES THE COUNTRY and keeps his staff and the lieutenant governor in the dark... it's just a plain dumb and reckless thing to do. Especially during hurricane season? Anything could have happened in his absence. He's given a whole lot of ammunition to his state legislature to kick him out of office. After they fought him over stimulus money, I think they will not be heartbroken to do battle on this matter and deal with another governor in the future.

    Stacy L.
    Springfield, OR

    June 24, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  95. bobcn1

    Just for once could we treat one of these pampered prima donnas like a normal person? In the real world if you disappeared from your job for a week you would be fired. If your excuse for abandoning your job was that you wanted to be with your mistress, I suspect any future references you would get from the employer who fired you wouldn't be very favorable.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  96. bob in Arkansas

    This governor shows his concern for his office by ignoring his responsibilities . I say impeach him so he can move to Argentina and live happily ever after. I figure his wife is fixing to impeach him in her own way also.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  97. Arlene

    Yes he should resign or be fired. Not because of the affair but because he left his post. What were the people of South Carolina supposed to do in the case of any emergenc for the past 5 days. The Lt. Governor had a right to know if he was supposed to be in charge.

    Arlene in Atlanta,

    June 24, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  98. Paulet, Connecticut

    Watching the raw emotion at the news conference; I would say that Mark Sanford is not ready to throw in the towel on his double life - that he revealed Too Much Information about the personal aspect and not enough about his basic responsibility to the State of South Carolina is amazing - he does not seem fit to carry on as Governor while he is going through his personal turmoil. He does not seem ready to accept responsibility for what he did not do - leave someone in charge and leave a "special" number in an emergency -
    My heart goes out to his wife and boys -

    June 24, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  99. ranjit kuruvilla

    No. Man who is not able to mange the house, is not fit to run the state. How can you depend on a man whose actions speak for hiself.

    Chesapeake VA

    June 24, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  100. Jackie

    Republican Christian Family/ Moral Values don't call for him to resign as it does for Democrats like Gov. Spitzer and President Clinton. Look we support and forgive Republicans conduct but not Democrats. Now Mrs. Stanford has twenty years invested in her marriage but if the good old boys get Stanford out he will most likely return to his mistress and live a happy life.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  101. Bob - Pittsburgh

    There are just two words that say it all: Bill Clinton, alright so it's one name. Why do we measure two men differently over the same topic. We are all human and humans make mistakes. At least this guy has the guts to admit his faults.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  102. Deighton Morris

    Actually I think he should have announced his resignation as Governor when he finished his statement about his affair at the press conference. That having not been done, the choice is clear; he has to be kicked out.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  103. Stephen Henderson

    In response to your comments about Gov. Sanford: I believe that he should resign his office and in the absence of his doing so: should immediately be impeached. While an 'affair' is never right . it is not an acceptable example for a public servant – especially one who, along with his party, espouses the importance of 'Family Values". But more importantly, the flagrant disregard for the safety and well-being of the citizens of South Carolina affirms that he lacks the capacity to govern in a responsible manner.


    Stephen Henderson
    Carmel, California / Augusta. GA,

    June 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  104. Dave Guenther

    Skipping out on his boys during Father's Day weekend is one thing, skipping out on an entire state is another. Let's just hope taxpayer funds weren't used since this little "love junket" didn't sound planned out very far. Do you realize what a last minute flight costs to Argentina? This could have been a $10,000 weekend easily. At a minimum he should be impeached for sheer negligence. If tax money was used he needs to visit a jail cell for awhile.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  105. bobj72 Dallas, TX

    The Governor SHOULD RESIGN. Not because of his infidelity, but because of his irresponsibility in leaving his office without proper notification and coverage.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  106. Teresa in Fl

    Yes...by not informing the Lt. Gov. "he was going to be gone a few days" shows he let down his state as to any semblance of responsibilty. What is it with these Republican office holders here lately; they can't seem to keep their pants zipped up.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  107. H A Milton

    Absolutely. Bad enogh the Governor of the state engages in this behavior (affair and abandonment of office), but if the state legislature does not remove him, that will be an even more serious indication of the lack of leadership throughout the entire state government. Good grief!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  108. Brad Berg

    Gone, Yes. Good By! The sooner the better!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  109. Kerry Diehl

    Yes Indeed!

    Immediately after they "remove" Barney Frank, Chris Dodd and Harry Reid for their involvment and neglection of duties in the banking fiasco at Freddie and Fannie May induced by ACORN!

    June 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  110. Dennis Oddo

    No, I don't think the Gov. of SC should be removed from office for cheating on his wife. Although it appears he was unreachable, I'm sure if there was a problem that needed his attention he had established some sort of communication chain.

    With all of the horrible things going on in the world, I would leave the man alone. Jack, if this country is truly being "held together with spit and glue", Leave the man and his family alone!

    Dennis Oddo, Jupiter, FL

    June 24, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  111. Carol in New Jersey

    Yes, he should be removed from office. He is a disgrace.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  112. Kim

    Yes, he should be removed. Not only did he leave the country for an illicit affair, but he had his staff lie for him! How can his constituents trust him? The lack of morals, values, and ethics exhibited by many politicians is a poor example for our youth. Despite what they think, they are not "masters of the Universe" who can do as they please without consequence.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:53 pm |
  113. Claire

    If we fired everyone who has had an affair there would be tons of job openings. If the Governor of SC is to be fired it should only be if he misused funds to "visit" his friend or if he neglected his duties as govenor. Being fired for having an affair is Jenny's job.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:54 pm |
  114. sakeena

    I would like to hear what female strategists and political advisors think of the SC governor's behavior. Wolf got Carville and the other guys opinion. Women ought to have a different take.. and I ‘d like to know their thoughts about this governor’s infidelity.

    As a woman.. I would not let the creep off the hook and certainly wouldn’t extend forgiveness anytime soon..


    June 24, 2009 at 5:56 pm |
  115. Ken Mc Lean, TX

    Bob – Pittsburgh June 24th, 2009 5:36 pm ET

    There are just two words that say it all: Bill Clinton, alright so it’s one name. Why do we measure two men differently over the same topic. We are all human and humans make mistakes. At least this guy has the guts to admit his faults.
    Bill Clinton did not abandon the USA and leave it leaderless for an entire week. Not at all the same circumstances – save for the morality factor but then the Democrats do claim that as the Repuglicans do.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:56 pm |
  116. Eric from THE Republic of Texas

    Oh, I'm sorry, did I miss the part of the story where he lied to a grand jury perjuring himself and was ultimately impeached by the Congress of the United States for perjury and obstruction of justice?

    If THAT guy defiantly thumbed his nose at an entire nation and kept his job, then Sanford in little ol' South Carolina should be just fine.

    But nice try, though. You get an A for effort.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:56 pm |
  117. Candy Wilson

    Yes.. It's bad enough what he did to his family but professionally he left the state in a lurch....That's where the resignation comes into play... I feel the same way about the governor who bought his mistress gifts with taxpayer money....People, News commentators on Fox, in particular were critical of the president taking his wife to the opera...Vice// versa...

    June 24, 2009 at 5:56 pm |
  118. Rohit

    If an effective (pre- and post-election) governor such as Elliott Spitzer had to resign, so should an ineffective, good-for-nothing Governor Sanford. This is an example of how the once mighty Republican party, full of it's supposed moral values, is showing its two-faced lies and cheating the people that they serve, including their families.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  119. E. Kelly

    Yes he should. In less than a week, two members of the "Family Values" party have admitted extramarital affairs. After the absolute torture former president Clinton went through and virtually every other Democrat has, including John Edwards, this is the ultimate level of hypocrisy. He should resign, just like he would've wanted a Democrat who commited adultery to do. If he won't, then maybe the South Carolina legislature needs to impeach.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  120. Mike Suss

    I do believe that the governor did something wrong, however, when it comes to removing him from office I do not think that should be done. If he used state money or violated some law then yes. I do not feel it is fair to bash him more because he is a Republican or think all Republicans are cheaters. Several Democrats are guilty of cheating as well, they are just people. South Carolinas governor is no different than Elliot Spitzer the former Democratic Governor of NY. So to bash Republicans is low and is not needed.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  121. ellen from Tampa

    He absolutely should resign. That's the problem with public displays of self-righteousness; sooner or later you have to face the hypocrisy of your private moral degeneration. It is inevitable, but those who live in self-righteousness always seem to forget this...

    June 24, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  122. rondia

    Jack, I am willing to bet this is not the real truth about him, has anyone checked his passport or flight,( the gov don't just get on flight without no ones knowledge) there seems to be more to this than they are saying, even with the reply from his wife, Jack I will bet you this is a cover up for something much more serious than a affair.

    June 24, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  123. Jim in San Mateo

    He probably can't be removed from office for the affair, but he can be removed for dereliction of duty for failing to give the reigns to the Lt. Governor while he was out of the country.

    And yes he should, though he should be given the opportunity to resign over the next two or three days.

    June 24, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  124. Rowdy, Harlingen TX

    He should step down all by his little self. He could not be counted on to seriously address the business of the state of South Carolina. This activity will haunt him forever. Goodby dummy

    June 24, 2009 at 6:02 pm |