Mark Sanford voted to impeach Bill Clinton for having an affair and lying about it while in office. He said, ""I think it would be much better for the country and for him personally (to resign)." In explaining why he voted to impeach the president, he said, "I think what he did in this matter was reprehensible... I feel very comfortable with my vote." He added that Clinton lacked "moral legitimacy" after his affair.
Now, a lot of conservatives will fall back on the old refrain of "But, but, but, Clinton was under oath!" Yeah, who put him there? Who would pass the test of being perfectly honest if they were put under oath about all of the details of their sex lives? I certainly wouldn't. No way I'd tell the whole truth to some pervert like Ken Starr who would later write a salacious, near pornographic, account about it - and seemed to relish every minute of it. That's my business and not his business, and he can find something else to jerk off to.
But none of that matters, because Gov. Sanford agrees with me. He thinks lying to your wife is just as important as lying under oath. This is what he had to say about the affair of fellow Republican Bob Livingston:
I'm sure there will be a lot of legalistic explanations pointing out the president lied under oath, [Livingston's] situation was not under oath. But the bottom line is, he still lied. He lied under a different oath and that is the oath to his wife. So it has got to be taken very seriously.
Game, set and match.
This guy built his career on questioning other people's morals. He went after Democrats like Bill Clinton. He went after fellow Republicans like Bob Livingston and Larry Craig. He was on his moral high horse, all along. Listen to what he said about lying about an affair:
The issue of lying is probably the biggest harm, if you will, to the system of Democratic government, representative government, because it undermines trust. And if you undermine trust in our system, you undermine everything.
So, what about that Appalachian Trail? What about going alone to Argentina? In his own words, through these lies and many others over the last year (at least), Sanford has undermined everything. So, what does he do now that he has fallen off his high horse - he begs for forgiveness and refuses to resign.
Well, if you're going to do that, do it right. I will forgive Gov. Sanford if he truly apologizes and understands the mistakes he made in the past. The mistake wasn't just the affair. It was also in judging others. Not just politicians like Bill Clinton. But also, whole groups of people, like gay Americans. He argued they undermine the institution of marriage while he was busy undermining his own marriage. His wife built his career for him (she was his campaign manager), she built his family for him and he was ready to leave all that behind for an Argentinian lover with a nice rack. And gay people undermine marriage?
I can begin to forgive Sanford is he gives this apology:
I am so sorry for all of the people I judged through my false righteousness. I am so sorry to have judged Bill Clinton for what he did in his personal life. We should have never dragged him through that. I am so sorry for voting for impeachment. I am so sorry to the all of the loving gay couples in this country who want to make marriage work while I made a mockery of it. If they can find it in their heart to forgive me, I will try to be a better, less judgmental, less hypocritical and more open-minded person. Help me to become that person.
Then, we can see that he is sincere in recognizing his true faults. We are all human, but if we are to get beyond his mistakes and imperfections, he must understand what his original sin was. That is part and parcel of what he must atone for.
Follow Cenk Uygur on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CenkUygur