Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Pardon Me, As I Tiptoe Through a Minefield Here ..


I am probably the last blogger in SC to comment on this, but I had the common sense to wait and see what exactly what was going on with the whole Sanford Appalachian-Argentina trip fiasco. While many bloggers thrive and love red meat topics like this, I have to be more careful than probably all of them. You may not have noticed this, but I am the only political blogger in SC that actually holds offices within the party. There is a chance of me losing positions that I have worked very hard for. But I have a legion of readers that depend on me to see things as they are, and to give an honest opinion on politics. So, we're going to give our thoughts on some of it.....
Knowing that this may end up on various computer screens in Columbia, here is our disclaimer: the opinions given here are mine, and not those of the SCGOP nor should they be viewed as those of any official view of the Republican Party. There, if you want an official viewpoint, call the SCGOP directly..... You know, Ms. X had a comment on her MySpace page today that said "Before you criticize anyone, walk a mile in their shoes first. That way, you're a mile away from there, and you have their shoes". I'm not sure what that means, but it seemed appropriate to today's news.
I feel a little bit like a duck hit on the head today. Mark Sanford is one of my favorite guys in politics. No, I didn't agree 100% on everything with him, but we had a lot in common. Fiscal responsibility above everything, a dash of libertarianism, and that bit of smartass and thumbing your nose at the establishment. Ask Jim Clyburn who he hates the most in South Carolina, and he'd probably mention the two of us. Marital infidelity was the last thought on my mind, until right before Sanford's press conference. I find myself caught in my own words from last week, when Senator Ensign admitted to the same thing. In it, I had some definite opinions on what kind of person a man is who cheats on his spouse is. It is what it is, and as much as I think Sanford was a damned good Governor, I don't know him personally. Safe to say, he has really let us all down. That's as far as my judgement goes. I find it a little too uncomfortable to pray for a person who just cheated on is family - that's his job, and his choice.
What have, or least what should we learn from all this? It's pretty simple. First, don't cheat on your spouse. Secondly, and this is a byproduct of it all, is don't lie. I learned this a while back, because I am the world's worst liar. Cheating begets lying, and worst of all, it causes your associates (Ex. - Your staff) to lie for you, and it just makes things worse...
Now, there seems to be calls for him to step down, and there's a lot of outrage from certain people. I would advise you to look where the criticisms are coming from.... John Land? Please.... Jakie Knotts? C'mon. Mark Sanford gets along better with Gilda Cobb-Hunter than Jakie Knotts... Lastly, Andre Bauer is looking to replace Sanford as Governor, but they aren't the tightest pair in Columbia. It's pretty apparent that Nikki Haley is Sanford's choice to succeed him. If only for that reason, I would advise Sanford to finish his term. We have a wide open race for 2010, and if Sanford were out, then just give Andre Bauer the nomination next year, barring a disaster in office. Not that I'm against Bauer, but I'd rather see it decided on an even field. Haley is the big loser in this one, without a doubt.......
Personal aspects aside, is the possibility of a Sanford impeachment real? There have been lots of comparisons to Bill Clinton on this. Clinton didn't get impeached for cheating, he was impeached for lying to a grand jury under oath about it. Sanford has come clean, although the details of the trips aren't fully out there yet. Once again, the infidelity causing the behavior that actually gets politicians in trouble.....2012 is over, and that is the only silver lining I can see out of all this. I liked Sanford, but I didn't want to see him run for President.....
A couple weeks ago, I posed that question to Karen Floyd about who is driving the GOP bus. It seems a bit prescient in hindsight, because Karen has a challenge the likes of which she could never had imagined. While Mark Sanford is a big wheel on the bus, he is only a part. Over and over again, including from Karen Floyd, I heard that the GOP is made of thousands of people like myself, Moye, Earl, Tommy and others who volunteer and give to the party. That includes YOU too. WE drive the bus. WE choose the path the bus takes, WE fix the flat tire on the bus. And what about when when the bus seems like it blew an engine? WE REBUILD it...
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22 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mike--my phone started ringing earlier today as news of the Sanford situation broke. I not been on the best of terms with the Sanford Administration or the Governor. But this early into this developing situation I would encourage everyone to hold their thoughts and comments.
Regardless of what one may think of Mark or Jenny Sanford,whether you are Republican,Democrat or Independent there are four young boys who are watching their family's problems played out in front of God and the entire world. They will most likely find it difficult to get away from it as it will be on every TV,Radio and newspaper for many news cycles to come.
I would encourage everyone to hold their caustic comments not for the sake of Mark and Jenny Sanford but for Marshall,Landon,Bolton and Blake. Let us keep them in our thoughts and prayers...Tom Grimes SC6 District Chairman

pluvlaw said...

I've been on the road, so I have not really caught up on this mess, so I am holding off posting on this. But after watching the presser and reading the emails I do have a few comments:

1) His comment about opposing the stimulus strictly because he honestly felt it was in the best interest of the taxpayers is complete horseshit. It was to plant a flag on ideological ground that he could stand atop for 2012

Sanford's concerns over wasteful spending have a habit of popping up when it's politically advantageous for him. Just as those concerns seem to disappear when it's politically advantageous as well (see his cowardly stance on the I Believe license plates).

2) Herein lies the rub for politicians that push their faith out onto the public stage in their lives: You will most certainly one day look like a eff'ing hypocrite. No offense there Guv, but I'd really believe you felt a lot more contrite about violating "God's Law" if you hadn't tried to use I Corinthians 13 (note to self: quoting bible verses in romantic emails impresses hot latin women) to score a little tail.

3) If I was ever advising a pol who was this situation my advice would be this: Go out there. Say I am an unpardonable asshole and schmuck. I am now resigning my office and shrinking off under the cloud of shame I truly deserve. In a few years, you can come back and talk about how strong the experience made you and how you have a new sense of purpose to win back the people's trust, yada, yada, yada...

4) However, if anyone caught Andre on MSNBC last night, if Sanford were to resign my first hope is that we could have an election to simply leave the damn office vacant. Not a good showing by the B-boy.

Mike Reino said...

P-Luv, I'll disagree with you on the stimulus part. If it all were a big game of chicken for political purposes, I think Mark would have blinked a lot sooner, but he rode it to the end..

I do appreciate the tip on picking up Latin girls, though. Argentinian chicks are pretty hot - they're like Italian girls, but less hairy.. Easy everyone, I'm Italian too...

Earl Capps said...

Sanford's people were so hot to drag out the sludge on any of his opponents. I'm guessing he knows a little bit of how it feels to be such a target now.

But he is irrelevant, totally irrelevant. His time is up.

If he wants to do the state and his family a favor, it's time to give it up and walk away. Otherwise, the next legislative session will be all about further neutering the office of the Governor, which will do tremendous harm to the state.

pluvlaw said...

See where Haley has already pulled Sanford's pic and removed any reference to him on her site?

pluvlaw said...

I don't think the Stimulus was a game of chicken. It was a move so that in 2012 he could say "I was the only Governor who refused to take the money." (Even though there is no doubt that decision harmed South Carolinians: No benefits, but paying the freight).

So there was no reason to blink. Hell...it got him what he wanted. He could have said, "The Supreme Court of South Carolina had to ORDER me to take the money. I didn't want to..."

Mike Reino said...

In that case, he got what he wanted - he ran the string out so that he didn't back off his stance. I od hate the argument for accepting the money being based on payment without benefit. If half of the states stood up on this, what would have happened. The bill was too much non-job stimulus, not enough infrastructure stimulus.

pluvlaw said...

I think the Governor's problem was there was not enough Argentinian stimulus...(zing! Beautiful set pass, Reino. I feel like C. Thomas Howell to your Peter Horton. Quick, 8+16 = ...)

Anonymous said...

So Ms. X walked across the Andes in your shoes?

Anonymous said...

Mark screwed up. We have a 6 PM Executive Committee Conference call tonight. It is going to be interesting man.

mg said...

My Dear Mike. I was one of those that always supported the Guv. The big problem I see is him leaving the state his personal stuff is for him and his family to hash out. I have heard everything since yesterday comparing him to this person and that. First Bill Clinton did lie under oath. The dude from New York was using a call girl I believe. The present Governor of New York has admitted an affair in the past. The guy from New Jersey who was married to a WOMAN had an affair with a MAN. Mark has admitted to an affair with a woman he fell in love with. She is supposed to love him. There is a difference here right or wrong. I can still pray for him and his family. I can still say I am a Republican and why. Sanford has really screwed up. Jake and Land really need to shut up. Andre needs to be careful very careful.

Mike Reino said...

Sound advice, Anon. Hey, what happened to everyone giving their name, except Earl and Tommy ??

Mike Reino said...

If it was Ms. X, that tells me two things: Mark Sanford is a very lucky guy, and Ms. X has a lot more money than I thought !!

Mike Reino said...

..... and that would make Ms. X Courtney Thorne-Smith. How ironic. Sorry, I did have to look that one up. "Side Out'?! Geez !!! We need to get out more, P-Luv !

Anonymous said...

Mike, good work!

hypocrite : one who fails to meet his own standards.

liberal : one who has no standards to meet.

Because I serve the one who controls the wind and the water, I will be praying for the first family of our state....and I'll be watching for the lemonade that will be made from these lemons.

pluvlaw said...

Sanford reimbursing State for part of trade trip:

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/2009/jun/25/sanford_detoured_argentina_taxpayerfunded_trip/

Smart move to not argue over it (when he probably could). At least he's realizing the appearance of impropriety is impropriety in the eyes of many, especially when you've lost what trust the public did have in you.

Bobby said...

The bus didn't blow an engine, Maria did.

Bobby said...

hypocrite : one who fails to meet his own standards.

liberal : one who has no standards to meet

there's one conservative that needs to take a look in thee mirror!

Mike Reino said...

BOBBY !!! Ugh....

mg said...

you know sometimes you just have be anon or is bill

pluvlaw said...

As the resident liberal, I have to warn you Anon, I do have very high standards...when it comes to lemonade. So it better wind up being better than any of that weak Crystal Light crap...Daddy wants cut up organic lemons and real sugar.

Anonymous said...

When God makes the lemonade he always makes the real stuff.