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Yes, Jenny Sanford, you will survive

Submitted by on Saturday, 27 June 2009 2 Comments

What kind of dolt, having been caught in an adulterous affair after he leaves a love letter to his mistress lying around, returns to the scene of the crime six months later?

A dolt like South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, whose wife had found out about his dalliance in January and forgave him but told him not to see his Argentine mistress again.

“I said absolutely not,” Jenny Sanford told The Associated Press. “It’s one thing to forgive adultery. It’s another to condone it.”

This month, her husband told her he “needed time alone to write,” the New York Times reported, a cover story about as plausible as the “hiking alone on the Appalachian Trail” tail his staff concocted for the media.

His writing/hiking story blew up Wednesday, when a reporter from The State in Columbia, S.C., found him at the Atlanta airport getting off a plane from Buenos Aires.


Not surprisingly, some now are calling for Stanford’s resignation, though he’s comparing himself to the Biblical figure of David and saying he’s not backing down.

He is apologizing, though, for spending state money for a trip that included a visit with his mistress and for giving his security detail the slip and disappearing for almost a week. Incidents that some ethics experts say would get him fired in the private sector, by the way.

Jenny Stanford’s response: “His career is not a concern of mine,” CNN said she told reporters. “He’s going to have to worry about that. I’m worried about my family and the character of my children.”

Good for her. And how refreshing after seeing a generation of political wives, from Hillary Clinton to Dina McGreevey to Silda Spitzer do the Tammy Wynette thing and stand by their men.

Jenny Sanford instead is standing up for her family. The couple is separated, though she says she’ll try to work it out.

“I don’t know if he’ll be with me, but I’m going to do my best to work on my marriage because I believe in marriage. I believe in raising good kids is the most important thing in the world,” she said.

With or without him, Jenny Sanford says she’ll be just fine. And you have to believe that she will.

She’s an educated woman, a former investment banker who frequently acted as her husband’s political advisor and policy sounding board. But don’t try to put her in the box labeled castrating witch. Cliches don’t apply here.

“So often when a woman is business minded, they’re not good at being a cookie baking soccer mom, but that’s the thing about Jenny,” said Jennifer Pickens, a friend for over a decade told the Times. “You cannot stereotype her that way. She can be either one of those things and do it effortlessly.”

This particular situation is going to take a lot of effort, and Jenny Sanford knows that.

“Parenting is the most important job there is,” she told AP, “and what Mark has done has added a serious weight to that job.”

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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  • Amanda Parrish said:

    I am so PROUD of the way Jenny Sanford is handling this issue! Every woman should follow her lead. I am so happy that she did not stand up there with her husband while he made the announcement. No woman should have to go through that! She will be just fine because she is a very strong person who is independent! As a South Carolina resident she makes me very proud! Way to go!

  • MtnMom said:

    Go Jenny! Doing what is best for her children, not just the man’s political career.

    Yikes. Does the dude comparing himself to David in the Bible realize that David had his mistress’s husband murdered? What’s he saying here? Makes me sick when cheating morons won’t just admit they cheated and deal with THAT fact. Sheesh! The excuse making makes me sick. He needs to resign as early as yesterday.