June 24th, 2009
08:56 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Governor Admits Affair

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford chokes up on Wednesday as he admits to having an affair.

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford chokes up on Wednesday as he admits to having an affair.

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

The mystery is over. All those questions over the whereabouts of South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford were answered today. He's confessed to having an affair with a woman in Argentina. He wasn't hiking the Appalachian Trail. He was in Buenos Aires to be in the arms of his mistress.

There were tears at Sanford's new conference. And, surprisingly, there were a lot of details on how his eight year e-mail relationship with a "friend" turned into an extramarital affair. We'll show you some of those e-mails.

We also have the explosive new details from Iran where police and the militia were out in full force. Protesters were fleeing. We'll have the latest.

Join us for these stories and more starting at the top of the hour.

See you then!

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (116 Responses)
  1. Mark

    Why should I care who he sleeps with? It's not my problem or concern and frankly I don't care and have seen enough of it on the news to last me a lifetime.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:40 am |
  2. Samuel W. Garner

    The South Carolina admittedl comitted a serious mortal sin by his long term relationship with the South American country. However,
    it is one thing to provide "need to know" information of the details , i.e., the contemt of the emails has no socially redeming value. This is mere explotation of the sleezy details.

    Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:34 am |
  3. Patricia

    Govenor Sannford did not want to give South Carolina the stimulus package to help schools, employment, and etc., yet he commits adultry on his wife. This is the type of leader this state has had for two terms, sure says a lot for the state of SC and it's representatives. In the days of Christ adultry was punishable by death, with the state of SC and the standards the representatives of this state stands for, nothing will happen but talk and gossip then death to the fact it happened.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:32 am |
  4. Rob Garraway

    Please, people. Is this really news? Does the country really care?
    maybe the voters in S.C. car, but does anyone else? The guy is part of the immoral majority so nobody should be surprised. But to spend more than a few minutes on this is also immoral. A total waste of time. 'Specially with so much more important news happening.
    So, can we please get back to the immportant news.
    IRAN, N.KOREA etc.


    June 25, 2009 at 2:26 am |
  5. Annie

    The bottom line is that Gov. Sanford got caught with his pants down.
    I don't think that his wife is gorgeous, but she is probably a good
    mother and trying to be a good wife. But, how can you do that when
    you know that your husband is cheating and really not present. I don't
    care if Maria has big hips or soft kisses, he is a married man with 4
    children. Instead of worrying about Maria's problems he should be
    thinking about being a good husband and father to the children he
    brought into this world. (His jewels and blessings). He is probably a
    a very selfish man who needs a lot of attention and likes a needy
    woman to feel important and got suckered into her problems. Maria is
    a golddigger and he is a very fragile man with problems. I don't feel
    sorry for him. Live up to your marriage vows and be mature and committed to your family, they need your time and attention. Maria
    knew he was a married man and he knew it also. Affairs can only
    happen when the other woman allows it .

    June 25, 2009 at 2:20 am |
  6. Gigi

    Why is is that those we elect to a public office have to put aside those things which make us human? He is, after all. In these highly publicized careers, these people (both sexes) are tempted daily in many ways, and marital infidelity, while it is horrible and wrong, is the LEAST of many of those temptations. My hunble opinion, and that's all these comments are, is that let the wife decide how to proceed, pay attention to what he does politically, and leave his children and his wife alone. I mean, look at our president, smoking in the Oval Office, yet taxing us on same habit, If Sanford used taxpayer funds, that's different, THAT is something we should complain about. There is no infallible person, not anywhere.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:18 am |
  7. Nancy

    Anderson, please.....these experts that appear on CNN leave a lot to be desired. Since when is falling in love something to be ashamed of? If one finds a friendship that is special enough to grow into an affair, don't you think that maybe they need to move on with their lives?

    This business of staying in a marriage even though it has run its course is demeaning the institution and is not healthy for the children involved. One should not have to "try", on the contrary, if you would rather be intimate with someone other than your spouse, than what's so wrong with getting a divorce? I think it is more honest than staying together for the children, or political gain or not wanting to split the wealth.......etc.

    I could not believe what I was hearing coming out of these so-called "experts' " mouths. Since when does falling in love with someone make one a sex addict? Please get rid of the Drew Pinsky's of the media. Your panel and Larry King's panel need to get real.

    Mr. Sanford does not owe anyone any explanation. It is a private matter and should stay that way. He made a difficult situation worse by explaining himself. Also, I have no respect whatsoever for these wives who remain married in these situations. They should also move on. I think they are pathetic, and I am tired of our puritanical, unsophisticated values in this country.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:15 am |
  8. joani

    Really, who cares? It's his personal life!!

    June 25, 2009 at 2:13 am |
  9. Pfeff

    How does a governor go all the way to Argentina without anyone noticing, especially when the story is a huge deal? Seems like there was a lot more digging that could have been done a few days ago.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:13 am |
  10. denise g

    Hey all you women out there who need a man. Go and get a Republican Politician. They seem to be easy to get.

    June 25, 2009 at 2:04 am |
  11. DutchBoy

    What did Mr.Stanford ACTUALLY do that he had to cover it up by humiliating item 1)himself, item 2) his family and item 3) his whole party????
    It must be something wayyy beyond just "I was unfaitful to my wife"!

    June 25, 2009 at 1:52 am |
  12. carole lieff

    His wife was not there because she didn't want to be there, not because this guy was thinking about her feelings

    And he deserves no applause for being honest. He had no choice if he has any hope of salvaging his career, which I hope he can't

    June 25, 2009 at 1:50 am |
  13. Robert in Illinois

    The marital infidelity of Governor Sanford is a matter between him and his wife. State payments of his trips to Argentina and his leaving the state without a formal transfer of gubernatorial power is a matter for the citizens of South Carolina. The hypocrisy of his family values and his "moral legitimacy" in his impeachment vote of then President Clinton are matters for the Republican party and the American voters. Are people still surprised by the sexual immorality of politicians who are fed the ultimate aphrodisiac mixture of power and fame?

    June 25, 2009 at 1:45 am |
  14. Indira Iyer

    I dont understand the obsession American media and citizens have with politicians, their sexual exploits and the subsequent politicization of the entire sordid affair. This is too much time and energy being spent feeding voyeuristic urges everywhere.

    Fact is human beings have a capacity to connect, feel, share and love even beyond the limits and constraints of marriage. Human beings are hypocritical in not admitting that this can occur and must be dealt with compassion not judgment.

    I feel sorry for the Governor in way that because of his high profile office he is caught whereas hundreds of others do not have to wash their laundry in public.

    Stop giving this so much attention CNN!


    June 25, 2009 at 1:43 am |
  15. Dominique R.N.

    It is unfortunate that the media in America spends so much effort and time in covering this type of affairs. Governor Sandford has admitted his fault, his wife still loves him, he confessed by those emails confusion and admits that he has never been in that situation ever; so that tells you of his sincerity; and that his family knew of this problem and they were dealing with it. So, please give him and his lovely family time to repair and heal. It is more distructive to keep escalating this story when it is now so transparent...we need to forget and forgive. We should be weighting the fact of his good public service and career, and the clean moral character that the Governor has previously exhibited and lived by; just one mistake of this type and the media make a big story. Those emails should have never been published!. where is the right for privacy these days?. Leave this family alone, and let them resolve this problem in privacy. As far of his public service; that is still to be investigated if he violated any rules in disappearing, or using funds inappropriately...that is the story that they should be covering!.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:41 am |
  16. Denise

    The biggest issue, in my mind, is that Gov. Sanford walked off the job without any thought about what could happen to his state during the 6 days he was "out-of-pocket". If I walked off my job for 6 days without contacting my company and arranging for back-up coverage, I'd be fired. The level of arrogance he has displayed is beyond words... after all no one can predic t or control what can happen in a state for a short period of time – let alone 6 days – (e.g., fires, tornadoes, train / plane accidents, ...) and he is the person with the authority to deal with such events. To go missing is the height of irresponsibility. The affair? that's really between the Sanford family and Maria.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:33 am |
  17. phacy

    The same substance that is contained in the brain of all politicians. He's not the first and he won't be the last to let Junior do his thinking for him

    June 25, 2009 at 1:29 am |
  18. Godson Beaugelin

    Our leaders should adopt the King Law Affair-"Bigamy-Addict"-The King knows no wrong-L’état c'est moi (I am the country). President Bill Clinton is LOL tonight again- Most scholars have concluded that, in politics, our leaders need to be King Solomon (These wives were considered tokens of friendship) in order for them to do a good job. Just like Solomon, governor AOWL Sanford is very aggressive in his foreign policy. “ He with no sin, cast the first stone.”

    June 25, 2009 at 1:26 am |
  19. Becky

    I am a resident of SC and could not believe that our Gov would "drop off the face of the Earth" like he did. Suddenly it was like, where in the hell is our Govnr??? No one knew where he was!! I am ashamed of him. He should resign immediately! We need someone we can trust. It's one thing to take a scheduled day off or vacation... But just like any job, if you don't show up and you don't call in, Your Fired!!

    June 25, 2009 at 1:23 am |
  20. SONE B

    We are trying to get this economy on track, we can careless about the Govenor, he should think less about having an affair and worry about taking part in the stimulus package, and stop being a ass..........he may not want a stimulus package, but the people of South Carolina sure do...........

    June 25, 2009 at 1:22 am |
  21. Jean-Philippe

    It is interesting to me that Mr. Sanford is against gay marriage because he wants to preserve the sanctity of marriage! Hypocricy at its best!

    June 25, 2009 at 1:20 am |
  22. Tally

    I've noticed that many people on here displayed doubts on the full weight of this scandal.
    First of all, it's a scandal because governors, being in their position of reliance, shouldn't be going through something like this at all. It's not even a minor tizzy, it's selfishness to his family and to the citizens of the state. Can't a divorce suffice? Oh but wait, he's got his conservative honour and reputation to uphold, gotcha. Because this is so much better.
    Secondly, this is even more publicized than Ensign's affair because he literally upped and left his office without a commanding mandate. Uh... That's why everybody was worried to begin with. Leaving an entire state to its own problems for a few days. Makes one wonder how fruitful his leadership was to begin with... Hmmmm...
    I mean if Clinton (being the most notable) and others resigned, I think the same uniform action should be considered with all influential political figures found in a similar situation.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:17 am |
  23. Mark Goulston

    P.S. to my last comment. Why is it that men do this?

    Men are adrenaline junkies, because adrenaline rush = feeling powerful, but what they aren't prepared to deal with is the fact that "the thrill of an adrenaline rush is only exceeded by the agony of an adrenaline crash."

    Adrenaline junkies will do whatever they can to get that rush back. Doing something forbidden is one of the ways to do it.

    Rightly or wrongly the love for and from a spouse may give you an endorphine driven feeling of well-being, but endorphine is no match for an adrenaline rush.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:15 am |
  24. april tassin

    Let's all bail out the man responsible for our state's safety. What is the big deal we bailed out all of the corporate hogs. For Pete's sake. Let him say "shucks y'all" I'm so sorry and then let us, the tax payers, let him resign in shame but pay for all of his pension and benefits for life. That would really teach him a lesson just like the corporate hogs. He shamed and disrespected the office we elected him to but he will never be punished. He will still recieve full medical benefits, and all of the etc.s that were promised him and paid by us. If I did not show up for work for 4 days I would be fired with no continueing benefits. But "shucks y'all" it is only your money not mine.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:14 am |
  25. J Edward

    The only thing worse than this clown Sanford cheating on his wife is the fact that he is so self absorbed that he feels he needs to take up 45 min of media time to explain himself. What a clown. He is supposed to be close to the cream of the crop for politicians. Considering everything else going on in the world I can't believe anyone is indulging him in hashing through this. I would have figured that Anderson would think this is rediculous and would ignore it just as the rest of us should. Enough said.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:13 am |
  26. sam lewis

    it is definitely true mysery loves company, that is why it is so importan for the media to report something personal about a persons life that is so insignifacant about a persons personal life, that has nothing to do with a persons profession. be it professional or not.

    June 25, 2009 at 1:11 am |
  27. Breta L.B.

    two problems
    1) the affair did affect his job : he wasn't doing his job for 5 days, and nobody could locate him – a state of 4 million people are supposed to trust this man – but nobody even knew where he was. now, people have affairs all the time and it doesn't mean they should quit their jobs, but anyone who doesn'g go to work for a number of days without explanation gets fired, even when they don't have the responsabilities he's supposed to be taking care of.
    2) i don't understand the statement issued by his wife. she'll take him back if he CONTINUES to work towards repairing their marriage?? continues??? he moved out 2 weeks ago, so his wife could decide if she forgives him...where does he go? to his mistress. come ON!

    June 25, 2009 at 12:59 am |
  28. Folli

    Don't be confused–this "non-story" was politically motivated, not only by his democratic opposition, but those within his own party. It would have NEVER had happened if greedy politicians weren't PO'ed about "getting theirs" via government stimulus.
    People should actually be impressed that he owned to to his emotional infidelity, rather than trying to cover up or deny it. He hasn't strayed (no pun intended) from his ideology.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:32 am |
  29. Jill Wertz

    This situation should be private, between Sanford and his wife... not a matter of public opinion. If everyone in business who had an
    extra-marital affair, was asked to resign their from their job, our unemployment rate would be twice as high as it already is!

    June 25, 2009 at 12:24 am |
  30. Jim Herk

    Sanford betrayed whatever special trust and confidence he held with his family, his staff, SC citizens, and the GOP...he basically deserted his position and office...in military terms he went AWOL and left his state ungoverned. I cannot envision him surviving another week as governor. He betrayed all who deserved his loyalty and service. What he has done to his family is bad enough...what he has done to his office warrants his resignation. Without trust and confidence, he cannot lead and govern effectively...the citizens deserve a committed, capable, and principled leader.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:21 am |
  31. Hope

    I agree that the Gov.'s personal problems are best worked out in private, however, Gov.Sanford is not a private citizen, he's the Governor of South Carolina and as such, has a responsbility to the citizens of that state. He disappeared for several days and lied to his staff as to his whereabouts, only to reappear and give a press conferentce admitting to having fled the state and country to rendevouz with his lover in Argentina, where, he stated, he spent his days "crying". Several times during his speech he also mentioned being emotionally exhausted. I think the man should resign so he can get it together. He's not capable of making wise decisions, as evidenced by his actions. And I don't believe for one moment that he's sorry. His apologies were so blase that it appeares the only thing he's actually sorry about is getting caught.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:11 am |
  32. Mina

    Who cares what Mark Sanford is doing in his PERSONAL life. This is between him & his wife. It does not need to be labeled as 'breaking news' or the headline of the day. Get back to more important stories....like how many innocent people are being murdered in Iran and what the rest of the world should be doing to help.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:08 am |
  33. kelly

    I don't care if gov. sanford cheats on his wife or not, that's his family's problem. What i do care about is tax payers paying for his vacations. If in fact this is true, will the justice system enforce the law and punish him accordingly? I'm tired of politicians and other popular millionares comiting haness crimes and getting nothing more than a smack on the hand. Where the average joe pays severly. It causes people like me to lose faith in the judicial system, and just flat out stinks.

    June 25, 2009 at 12:02 am |
  34. Gregory Hubbard

    All this concern for the Governor’s privacy and the silly comparisons to the Clintons are laughable. Neither of the Clintons harangued the nation about “Traditional Family Values,” or styled themselves as “Social Conservatives.” The Governor of the great state of South Carolina has done both, and while conducting an extra-marital affair, delivered self-righteous lectures to Gays, Lesbians and others involved in non-traditional families on the sanctity of traditional marriage. Please Mr. Governor, tell us about the sanctity of your marriage, and how you honored your spouse!

    For hypocrisy, he should compare notes with Governor Palin, who maintained her position denouncing sex education for teens while her own teen daughter was having sex with an older man, sex which produced a child. Worse, we were promised a marriage so that their relationship, and the baby, would be legitimate. Apparently that claim was just for the cameras, because when Governor Palin lost her bid for the Vice Presidency, they lost their interest in marriage.

    Meanwhile every one of these individuals speaks of protecting the children. These people are odious!

    Gregory Hubbard
    Sanford, Maine

    June 24, 2009 at 11:54 pm |
  35. Kimi

    My heart goes out to the Gov.'s family; and Gov. Sanford himself appeared to be remorseful. But its interesting how some ultra conservatives are so judgemental of others, and so big on "family values", and simultaneously doing their little dirt in the background. And from a political perspective, when the Gov's own party did not back his stance on not accepting the stimulus money, and a higher court also overrided his position on not accepting the stimulus package (that will effect many teachers and other hardworking citizens), I think he had a hard time dealing with this, could not believe it, and went off on the deep end.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:51 pm |
  36. S.C. Native

    Whether Gov. Sanford visits his Argentine love three times of three hundred times is of little concern to anyone except his wife as long as taxpayer money did not subsidize his trips – including this most recent one. I believe the important issue is that he abandoned his responsibilities as Chief Executive for the state. He could have accomplished his goal of time in Argentina by simply stating he was going on vacation and would check in with the office daily by phone and e-mail and shifting governing power to his Lt. Governor for the duration of his vacation if he thought that necessary. His affair is of little consequence other than to display his hypocrisy. His abandonment of his state and his responsibilities indicate a weak character and lack of intellect. This man is hardly presidential material. How many mistresses and mystery disappearances would he need to deal with the stress of the presidency?

    June 24, 2009 at 11:50 pm |
  37. Deborah

    Well, what can we say – just another hypocrite. Isn't Gov. Sanford the politician who said months ago he was going to refuse any economic stimulous for his state? Looks like he's had too much stimulation. It will be interesting to find out who paid for that stimulation. He's just another holier than thou, selfish, self-centered Republican. No wonder he can't think about what is best for the people in South Carolina. I guess he'll sit down somewhere.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:45 pm |
  38. Lyn

    The only two nRepublicans I've voted for in 45 years are Reagan and Sanford(twice). Where othersd see hypocrisy and lying, I see the courage to admit wrong, accepting responsibility for it, and a sincere apology to all involved.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:45 pm |
  39. sheila

    i think it is our business when these people preach morals and and look down on people that dont do what "they" want....and then these idiots go around and do exactly what the say we shouldnt do...its so hypocritical and it makes me sick...im tired of all of these politicians being such liars whether it be the republicans or the democrats...they are all basically a bunch of overpaid liars...and we as a society allow this to keep happening over and over and over again...wake up people...do we want these people making our laws....because these laws only pertain to the common people...not the rich, the powerful, the government.....it makes me sick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 11:40 pm |
  40. savannah

    im not surprised but deeply dissapointed, he has a family ...how does lust come before your family your sacred marriage, and hes a conervative christain?. ..i mean really this is not a case of love ..its pure stupidity and selfishness ...if he wasnt happy ..get a divorce! common sense...hellooo ...im 19 ..its not that hard i mean really. ...what ever happened to grown adults analyzing the long term affects.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:38 pm |
  41. Ann

    Please don't read anymore of those e-mails between the governor and his friend. That is so private – it's embarassing to be seen on TV! Iran is falling apart – why is this such big news??? let it play out between the two of them...leave them alone and report the news that affects the world...

    June 24, 2009 at 11:29 pm |
  42. Darlene

    You got caught Gov Sannford!! , had you put as much effort getting to Argentina South Carolina wouldnt have such shotty behind schools ( I bet your kids don't attend raggedy schools). Start the impeachment South Carolina. NO MERCY!!!

    June 24, 2009 at 11:27 pm |
  43. Evelyn

    What you do in the dark will certainly come into the light, at some point.
    He was too busy having an affair, that's why he could not make a decision on the stimulus money, so the people of South Carolina still have to suffer. I heard that he is wealthy, that explains it! He does not care how he hurts others. The state nor his family, so he should be embrassed, confused and whatever else.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:25 pm |
  44. Mark

    It is amusing to me that yet again another member of the so called moral majority has had to eat his own words.
    The hypocrisy is disgusting. Maybe these moral leaders need to take up a cause were they wont keep getting caught with their pants down.
    Who knows maybe they should try healthcare or feeding the homeless.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:23 pm |
  45. Laura

    I feel sorry for his wife and children. His wife asked him to leave TWO WEEKS ago and yet he still chooses to spend Father's Day weekend with his whore?! Now because he cries a few crocodile tears we are supposed to believe he's remorseful? Give me a break!! He's only sorry he got caught. If he was sorry for hurting his family, he would've ended it when his wife found out FIVE MONTHS AGO!!! That was the time to beg forgiveness and work on your marriage. I'd kick the bastard out and take him for every dime I was entitled to. Let his Argentinian whore have him now that his career is ruined and he's lost the respect of his children! Pitiful is what he is!!

    June 24, 2009 at 11:21 pm |
  46. Kara

    Man what a moron. And of course taxpayer dollars were spent on his trip to Argentina. That's how he gets paid! He's a chump.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:20 pm |
  47. Gene Albano

    I didn't realize that South Carolina had so many candidates for sainthood until I heard the condemnations against Gov. Mark Sanford. Okay, the man made a mistake. He's human. If the state has so many Christians, then they should be able to refer to their bibles and quote the passage that relates to the individual '...who casts the first stone.'
    Mark Sanford has been a pillar of the Republican Party and...as far as I'm concerned, he continues to be a pillar of my party. When we have so many Americans who resent references to the Clinton scandals and the entire political community who has chosen to give that man a 'free pass,' and now many are hypocrites who want to crucify the governor...I say, "FOUL!" I sincerely hope that Mark Sanford and his wife works this out and that he continues in his career as a "Shining Star" of the Republican Party.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:20 pm |
  48. Casey

    Dear Anderson, I, like most Iranians, have been glued to the TV for the last two weeks listening to every report from every news outfit.
    Your colleague Reza Sayah may have just hit on the most important point of all by the comment he made about the Islamic Republic and the nuclear issue. As Mr. Sayah mentioned, the world is about to take the Mullahs on their words and allow them to have a nuclear program. However, the events of the last few days are proof that this regime will lie, without hesitation, to advance its cause which is to stay in power at any cost. The Islamic regime’s only goal is to develop a nuclear bomb so they can hold the rest of the world hostage the same way they are holding seventy million Iranians hostage. In short, the Mullah of the Islamic Republic cannot be trusted. Please extend my regards, and the admirations of all freedom-loving Iranians, to your colleague Mr. Reza Sayah.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:19 pm |
  49. Pam

    The Governor response is wrote and contrived. Subliminal christion rhetoric is clever but overdone. He's done his homework on controling the pubic and the press. This too will go away. Do we still care about the other cheating Governor or A.G.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:18 pm |
  50. Kevin

    Well we have to forgive the Governor because he was a rising star in the Republican party. No one is perfect and he was with a woman. It probably is very hard to be with just one woman in that powerful position. He is and was shining during the incident, and still is shining because he let the public know that he was cheating and knows that the party needs a star and he can and still help the U.S. with overseas policy. We know that he will help us with Argentinian. He will be alright and the people of South Carolina will support the Governor because he was elected and people will still support because he's only a man with power and likes women. Power to the alliance for straight people.

    June 24, 2009 at 11:18 pm |
1 2 3