A third question is whether Sanford had any intention of revealing the affair to the public. At the airport, Gina Smith asked Sanford whether he had been alone in Argentina. “Yes,” Sanford answered. Then, according to Smith, Sanford “cut me off, saying he could see where the interview was going and he did not want to discuss the situation further.”

“I always will wonder if the story would have broken if I had failed to catch him in the airport,” Smith concluded. It’s possible Sanford was coming home under the delusion that he could keep the affair secret.

It was only after The State got in touch with the governor’s office, saying it had copies of several incriminating emails between Sanford and the Argentine woman, that Sanford scheduled a news conference and confessed. In that news conference, Sanford was asked whether he had been alone in Argentina. “Obviously not,” he answered.