What a horrid affair, in more than one sense of the word. As Philip Klein points out, it is awful on so many levels. The question is not, will Mark Sanford resign? It is, when will he resign?
The affair and family betrayal are terrible. Add to that betraying his staff and having them lie for him, looking foolish in the process. And then abandoning his state duties, leaving his security detail in the dark, and being out of touch even for state emergencies, in order to fly to another continent for sex. (Yes, he said he wanted to break off the affair, but the story sounds no more plausible than his hike along the Appalachian Trail.)
A politician can survive betraying his family. But betray enough people, including the entire state’s population, and you become a figure of ridicule, unable to perform your duties. How can he regain the credibility necessary to do his job?
He’s outta’ there. The only question is when.
And if he has any decency left, he will resign now. His family, whom he is putting through a public horror show, needs all of him if there is any chance of him making amends. His family should be his priority, and it needs healing, which isn’t likely to commence in the glare of national publicity. His only decent option is to quit now.
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