Mark Sanford Spends 1,265 Words Telling Us Why He’s the Victim Here, Y’all

Mark Sanford Crying

On Sunday, just days after the horrific Boston Marathon bombings and subsequent events that left three people dead, hundreds wounded, and a nation in shock — and just days after the explosion of a Texas fertilizer plant that killed thirteen people and injured hundreds more — Mark Sanford bought a full-page newspaper ad in the print version of Charleston’s Post & Courier to tell us just what a bad week *he* had.

In his 1,265-word, quintessentially Sanfordian screed, the former governor and Republican nominee for South Carolina’s First Congressional District begins, “It’s been a rough week….”

He then spends ten paragraphs (reprinted below) explaining why he was trespassing on his ex-wife’s property in violation of their divorce agreement after she’d asked him not to several times already; complaining that media outlets found his law-breaking to be newsworthy; whining that national party committee groups — like the one of which he used to serve as chairman — have been running negative ads against him, while his own campaign is running similarly negative ads against his opponent; offering excuses as to why he had to pay the largest ethics fine in South Carolina history; and, finally, concluding with a bizarre anecdote about the battle at the Alamo (which he incorrectly said occurred in 1863) because he seems to think it somehow applies to the situation he’s created for himself.

Not one word about what the rest of us would consider to be the main reasons last week was, in fact, a “rough week.”

See for yourself. Mark Sanford’s 1,265 word letter as posted in a full-page ad in the Sunday, April 21st edition of the Charleston Post & Courier is copied below. To view an image of the ad, click here.

A Personal Message from Mark Sanford

It’s been a rough week, and so I wanted to write to address both Wednesday’s news and the new incoming attacks by Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Accordingly, I’d really appreciate you reading this.

This week’s news caught everyone by surprise as the mechanics of my and Jenny’s divorce had been sealed to avoid the boys having to deal with any of this. Leaving aside the unusual timing of supposedly sealed documents coming to light two weeks before an election – Jenny and I have both agreed that our efforts at raising our four boys are best considered and weighed privately, rather than over the airwaves. Though we may be public figures, we are still human figures who struggle just as so many other families and divorced couples do in getting childrearing right as best you can. It’s hard enough on its own and it’s nearly impossible when the media is sensationalizing things. I would also respectfully submit that they do a real disservice to the truth when they are grabbing for headlines.

By original accounts you would have thought I was randomly sneaking around the house at Sullivans, when, in fact, I was returning a son from a neighborhood Super Bowl party. I did, indeed, watch the second half of the Super Bowl at the beach house with our 14-year-old son because, as a father, I didn’t think he should sit alone and watch it. Given Jenny was out of town, I tried to reach her beforehand to tell her of the situation that had arisen, and met her at the back steps and told her what had happened under the light of my cell phone when she returned. There are always two sides to every story, and time will tell as to whether I made the right call in that instance as a father. What I know in the meantime is that the media does all of us a disservice in throwing these things to the front page as this paper did, before all the facts are known. I would just ask that you be a little bit more deliberative in making your judgments.

The second issue is even more problematic if you care about limiting government’s interference in your life, in how we get Washington spending under control and how we grow jobs in the Lowcountry. I say this because it seems like Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee have decided to try and buy this race. This week Pelosi’s committee, whose aim is to take back the U.S. House of Representatives put up $370,000, while the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee committed to spending another $200,000 – bringing their total “investment” in this race to almost $1 million. The question for taxpayers here is what would these Democrats “buy” with this million? Most folks I talk to say it wouldn’t be an independent voice, but rather a consistent voice for the Democratic agenda. Mrs. Colbert Busch has, in fact, rooted for the Democrats to take over the House of Representatives in 2014 and hopes to be a part of it – and among her most significant procedural votes would be her vote for Pelosi as Speaker of the House.

In the Democratic ads, they hit hard. Their ads are untrue. And it’s wrong to take a piece of something, leave out the rest and arrange it to tell something that is intended to deceive people. I have faults and they are well chronicled, but wasting taxpayer money or using it to my own purposes has never been one of them. Frustration with the way government spent money was what got me into politics, and trying to do something about it has been what’s kept me in it. As in every other area involving taxpayers’ money, I have worked hard to save it. We had the lowest travel expenses of any governor in the last thirty years and spent half of what preceding governors spent on travel. Yet, we brought in more investment to our state than during any other eight-year period in South Carolina history — $24 billion. WE also sold the jet and saved over $1 million. I was the only governor to use the single-engine Cessna to get around the state, and, in the process, saved taxpayers $60,000. We did things like discontinuing the relocation of the state plane and saved $70,000. The list goes on as we did many, many other things to save taxpayers’ money in travel and elsewhere, some numbering in the millions – others in the tens of thousands…but they were all about having government spend less.

And when the House of Representatives in Columbia (hardly a fan club) looked at all of the ethics charges, they cleared me of every single one dealing with business class tickets, every financial question and narrowed their questions to our judgment on five flights in South Carolina in the state plane over almost seven years. I think we get them right, but even if I was wrong on every one, context matters. They questioned 2 percent of the 350 flights taken and found no issue with the other 98%. I stand by our decisions that they questions, such as flying from Columbia to Myrtle Beach for the opening of the largest single tourism investment in our state. But rather than spending the last year-and-a-half of my time in office litigating these things, I just paid the ethics fine so I could focus on making the most of the time remaining. Refocusing paid dividends for the people of this state, whether with Boeing’s arrival or in $260 million in vetoes sustained in my last year in office.

The Democrats’ ads will tell you none of this, so if you have further questions, go to, call me at the campaign office at 843-764-9188, or even on my cell at 843-367-1010.

Our Republic is in real trouble, and unless we make serious changes in Washington, I believe there will be real consequences for our country and each one of us. I’d like to take all I have learned and apply it to fixing things, but I’m outgunned, outmanned, and outspend by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Nancy Pelosi’s PAC. I don’t think it’s right for these huge liberal spending interests to come in and try to decide the election for us, but the only way I can win this is for you to run your own campaign against them. I’d ask that you copy this letter and send it to ten friends or call ten friends every time you see one of their ads.

I can’t win without efforts like this. I need your help, and I need it now. The election is in two weeks on May 7th, so there is little time.

I will leave you with one last thought. In March of 1863, there was similarly little time. A South Carolinian by the name of William Travis drew a line in the sand with his sword and simply asked those who would stay and fight, to cross it. His efforts, and that of those who died with him there at the Alamo, ultimately inspired Texans to come to the aid of their brethren and defeat Santa Anna’s army though they were outnumbered at the onset by six to one. I’m outnumbered right now, but will fight to the end toward freedom and financial sanity in Washington to sustaining it. I’d ask you to cross the line and fight with me.


Mark Sanford (signature)


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