it is Thanksgiving week, a time when most people are worried about their annual dinners with family, sporting events, including, of course, Carolina and Clemson facing off on the gridiron. However, Mark Sanford is grabbing headlines again.
Governor Sanford is grabbing headlines this week by being charged with 37, that is right, 37, violations of ethics rules by the South Carolina Ethics Commissions. Among the charges are campaign fund reimbursements from the still active 2006 Sanford for Governor campaign fund that VUI pointed out months ago.
Last week, VUI pointed out some problems with Sanford's handpicked Transportation Secretary. Since that posting, various people have submitted information to VUI about other problems with the Department of Transportation. Over the next week or so, VUI will be chasing down those leads and posting about what we find.
The irony of it all is stunning. Governor Mark Sanford ran twice on making South Carolina government open and accountable. Further, Governor Sanford has been quick to point out how members of the General Assembly did not meet his standards for ethics and fair dealing. Now, the Governor and his have lawyered up and are defending their actions on the very legal technicalities those they attacked used.
The Sanford mess smacks of hypocrisy. Sanford was the family values Governor who cheated on his wife. He was the accountable Governor who went missing for a week and left his sons on Father's Day weekend. Sanford and his associates are the folks who touted a higher ethical standard that now seems to be a smokescreen, especially if the mainstream media digs into the things at the Department of Transportation and the Department of Social Services.
Those hoping for a Sanford rehabilitation have to be disappointed. VUI is. We at VUI wanted to believe Mark Sanford was a sincere and honest man who we disagreed with on a couple of issues. But, as the evidence comes in, the Sanford mess is one of his own doing as the Governor and his lackeys look more like good ole boys out to get theirs than the reformers they claim to be. The question now is will the South Carolina General Assembly act, or will they cower behind their own political plays and fears of their own acts being exposed somehow.