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Divine Will

Mark Sanford believes he is doing God’s work

June 30, 2009

So Gov. Mark Sanford, who previously invoked the moral complexities of the life and struggles of King David as his reason for not resigning from office after he got caught cheating on his wife, now says that God wants him to stay put, too. He issued a statement to his supporters in South Carolina today, which read in part:

[L]ast week I had thought I would resign—as I believe in the military model of leadership and when trust of any form is broken one lays down the sword. A long list of close friends have suggested otherwise—that for God to really work in my life I shouldn’t be getting off so lightly. While it would be personally easier to exit stage left, their point has been that my larger sin was the sin of pride. They contended that in many instances I may well have held the right position on limited government, spending or taxes—but that if my spirit wasn’t right in the presentation of those ideas to people in the General Assembly, or elsewhere, I could elicit the response that I had at many times indeed gotten from other state leaders.

Allowances made for an alternative interpretation of “getting off so lightly,” this seems eminently reasonable. Rather than resign in disgrace, be forgotten by midweek, and have his family torn apart under the relative privacy of civil divorce court, Sanford is choosing to keep himself under constant media scrutiny while also upholding the celestial standards of lower taxes and states rights. What could be more pious than that?