Mark Sanford officially relaunched his political career on Wednesday.
The former South Carolina governor announced plans to run for his old—and currently open—1st Congressional District seat.
“I am running because our country’s future is at stake if we don’t get our hands around runaway government spending in Washington,” Sanford said in a statement announcing his run. “And given our nation’s long-term financial problems, we need more who have shown themselves to be leaders in standing up to the big spenders, regardless of party.”
Sanford’s statement didn’t make any mention of the extra-marital affair that toppled his political career back in 2009.
As Sanford jumps into the race to fill Sen. Tim Scott’s House seat, along for the ride is Joel Sawyer, the same communications expert who steered the governor’s office through several scandal-plagued weeks in 2009—when Sanford went from potential GOP presidential contender to disgraced governor. Sawyer’s interview with C&E back in 2009, about the circumstances surrounding Sanford’s absence from the governor’s office and how his communications staff handled it, is well worth the read.
Sawyer was alongside Sanford during a lengthy and somewhat bizarre news conference during which the former governor admitted to an affair in 2009. Sawyer was the one who eventually pulled Sanford away from the microphones.
The special election is set for May 7. There was speculation that Sanford’s ex-wife, Jenny Sanford, would also run for the seat, but she has decided against it.