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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

Capitol Hill

David Lewkowict

Atlanta, GA

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Sanford Harsh on Clinton’s Affair

June 25, 2009 - 1:01 PM | by: David Lewkowict

Governor Mark Sanford stood teary eyed – admitting to his extramarital affair with an Argentinian woman. This revelation ended his tenure as chairman of the Republican Governors Association and, most likely, any chances of the 2012 GOP presidential nomination.

Sanford, however, did not resign his position as South Carolina’s Chief Executive. That has foes on both sides of the political aisle crying foul (a shameless reference to his alleged dove hunting trip to Argentina). 

This was also different from the position Sanford took in 1998 when then-President Bill Clinton was caught in an affair with intern Monica Lewinsky.  In a Post-Courier article (9/12/98) Sanford is quoted as saying “it would be much better for the country and him personally (to resign).  I come from the business side.  If you had a chairman or president in the business world facing these allegations, he’d be gone. “  

Sanford served in Congress from 1995-2001 and voted for three of the four articles of impeachment against Clinton.

In a June 4 interview with FOX News, Sanford talked about the impeachment of former President Clinton and the Monica Lewinsky affair. Here’s a sampling of what the governor said:

“I think that there were enough sordid details to get people genuinely ticked off at… the irreverence for the office. ”

“You know, if somebody’s getting (oral sex) in… the Oval Office… that’s enough to tick off pretty much every soccer mom in America, and a whole lot of soccer dads.”

“So, people were, I think, genuinely offended — from either an ethical or moral standard on what had gone on.”

“You ask any guy, particularly one in office, ‘You’ve been screwing around on your wife?’ Maybe there’s 1 percent or maybe there’s 2 percent or maybe there’s 5 percent. But 95 percent of the time, whoever it is, is gonna say ‘No.’ And so, I think the public said no matter what Clinton did, whether he did or he didn’t do whatever it was that happened with Monica Lewinsky, is that guy gonna stand up and admit it? They said no, he’s not.”

Sanford became part of that rare 1, 2 or 5 percent Wednesday, when he admitted on national television, “I have been unfaithful to my wife.”

President Bill Clinton’s Statement on his relationship with Monica Lewinsky, August 17, 1998.   

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