“I’m not in any way unaware of how I’ve let you down. I’m not in any way unaware of my well-chronicled failings as a human being,” Sanford told a Hilton Head Island Republican group last week, in the first public speech of his campaign. “But I am equally aware that God forgives people who are imperfect.”…

As he hit the campaign trail here last week, Sanford – at times somber, at times enthusiastic about his return to the political arena, at times self-reflective – sought to win over Republican faithful by appealing to their sense of compassion.

“If you look, part of our shared humanity – and I’ve been on a journey on this front – is to say, ‘Every one of us, on some days we’re going to perform more magnificently than we ever could have imagined. On other days we’re going to perform far less [so],’” Sanford said at the lunch. “But that daily notion of getting back up and trying as best you can to make a difference where you can is really important.”