Forgive Mark Sanford

In an ideal world, Sanford would have disqualified himself as a candidate for the nomination of a party that talks about the sanctity of marriage. From Bill Clinton to Newt Gingrich and Rudy Giuliani, I’ve generally asked: If a man’s wife can’t trust him, why should the voters?

Yet Turner’s ad gives Sanford company he never really kept. “I know I’ve spent too much, but what’s a few trillion?” the actor asks Sugar. “It was all for you. But I’ve changed. I’ll keep my promises this time.”

Sanford wasn’t one of those Republicans who spent a lot of money. He constantly fought legislators in his own party over spending increases, proposing state budgets that grew no faster than inflation plus population growth. He erased an unconstitutional deficit without raising taxes or raiding trust funds. …

Sanford vetoed 243 items in the legislature’s next spending plan, totaling $167 million. He was one of the few Republican governors who resisted taking stimulus funds, and then wanted to use the Obama money to pay down the state debt rather than finance spending increases that would eventually be billed to the taxpayers.