BUT WILL SHE RUN?
By FITSNEWS || In the aftermath of S.C. Rep. Mark Sanford‘s most recent personal meltdown – and the rumors it spawned – buzz began building around Lowcountry lawyer Catherine Templeton as a potential challenger to the scandal-prone politician.
Now that Sanford has found himself at the heart of a more serious scandal, the drumbeat for Templeton is once again approaching a crescendo – as first district voters who gave the former “Luv Gov” a second chance last year are growing increasingly frustrated with his shenanigans.
Will Templeton answer the call?
“She’s his worst nightmare,” one Lowcountry GOP operative with ties to Sanford told FITS. “A woman who is smart, connected and easy to look at – and who is every bit as pro-taxpayer and pro-free market as he is. Basically she’s the voting record people want in this seat – without the baggage that goes with Mark.”
Templeton – who currently runs the largest agency in state government – hasn’t indicated a desire to run for elected office. And to the extent she’s being courted, most have been touting her as a potential gubernatorial candidate in 2018 given her statewide profile.
But Sanford’s incessant pooch screws keep swinging the door to the first district wide open …
“Mark’s problem isn’t so much the errors themselves it’s the frequency,” the GOP operative continued. “His pre-existing trust issues narrowed his margin for error – meaning each time a bad story breaks it’s worse for him than it would be for a typical politician.”
“And he keeps screwing up,” the operative added.
That’s Sanford’s problem in a nutshell: He can’t go three months without stepping on his, um, well … you know … which reminds voters why they don’t like him and opens the door to credible challengers. As a result, what should be an easy reelection for an incumbent with well-documented fundraising and retail political skills is looking increasingly problematic for Sanford.
After serving three terms in the U.S. House from 1995-2001, Sanford served two terms as South Carolina’s governor from 2003-11 – nearly getting impeached after admitting to an extramarital affair in 2009. It wasn’t his romantic exploits that caused him problems, but rather an investigation into his travel practices – which included the taxpayer subsidization of at least one of his romantic interludes.
Chronic over-sharing in response to his personal issues has also plagued Sanford throughout his political career.
Of interest? Templeton isn’t the only female first district candidate being courted to run against the “Luv Gov.”
Sources tell FITS Lowcountry solicitor Scarlett Wilson has been approached and encouraged to run for the seat assuming Templeton takes a pass.
Bottom line? Mark Sanford isn’t going to get a free ride in 2016 … and when he does draw opposition, he’ll have no one to blame for it but himself.