Mark Sanford, the disgraced former Republican governor of South Carolina who faded from the public eye after admitting an extra-marital affair, will try to make a comeback on Tuesday.
Sanford is one of 15 Republicans on Tuesday’s ballot for a special-election primary to fill the House seat vacated by Tim Scott, who was appointed to the Senate, The Washington Times reports
According to internal polling by several campaigns, Sanford has captured about one-third of likely GOP voters, making him the front-runner.
His most formidable opponents are a collection of state legislators, including Sen. Larry Grooms and Rep. Chip Limehouse.
Teddy Turner, son of CNN creator Ted Turner, is also on the ballot.
Sanford, while stumping in the First Congressional District, which he represented before serving as governor from 2003 to 2011, told National Public Radio that “there’s an amazing reservoir of human grace out there that I didn’t understand or fully comprehend until now.”
“People will give you a second chance,” he said.
“Then at some point you have to forgive yourself as well, and you have to stand back up and try and make a contribution wherever you can.”
Sanford’s downfall began when he went AWOL for several days in 2009.
He initially told his staff that he was going hiking on the Appalachian Trail, but instead secretly flew to Buenos Aires to visit his Argentine mistress — a woman who is now his fiancee.
When the truth was made public, he became a pariah.
His wife soon filed for divorce and published a memoir describing the embarrassing ordeal.
Yet, despite heavy pressure to resign, Sanford finished out his term in January 2011 and has kept a low profile ever since.
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