There’s some cause for concern according to Josh Marshall of the Talking Points Memo:

Late Monday evening, Gov. Mark Sanford’s office revealed that he is hiking on the Appalachian Trail.

On the face of it, that solves the mystery. But this article from The State, South Carolina’s main newspaper, suggests some more troubling possibilities to the story.

The governor’s spokesman would not disclose whether or not Sanford was hiking alone. And it seems that neither the governor’s office nor state authorities have been able to make contact with the him since he left the governor’s mansion on Thursday. (State Sen. Jake Knotts (R), who’s known as a critic of Sanford, told The State that he first asked the governor’s security chief what was up on Saturday "after he heard reports the governor could not be reached.")

Assuming this is true, it makes some sense of Sanford’s spokesman’s claim today that his office ‘knew’ where Sanford was (i.e., ‘on the Appalachian Trail’, which covers a lot of territory which, to be clear, covers most of the eastern United States) but that they had not been in contact with him.

Governor Sanford apparently does make regular trips without a security detail – I’m sure many governors do, but the problem is he has never been out of contact for this long.

I’ll keep up on this story, and hope and pray it will be a non-story.

HT: Pundette

Update: Found, or at least made contact according to Real Clear Politics, Governor Sanford has made contact with his chief of staff.

A spokesperson for Gov. Mark Sanford (R-MIA) has just sent an update on the whereabouts of the potential 2012 contender, saying he’ll return to his office tomorrow.

"Governor Sanford called to check in with his Chief of Staff this morning. It would be fair to say the governor was somewhat taken aback by all of the interest this trip has gotten," spokesperson Joel Sawyer said in an e-mail to reporters. "Given the circumstances and the attention this has garnered, the governor communicated to us that he plans on returning to the office tomorrow."

Now some are wondering if this will hurt his 2012 chances.  I wouldn’t read that much into his trip and “disappearance.”

2nd Update: Give me a break people, this isn’t a constitutional crisis.

3rd Update: Unfortunately, he wasn’t hiking.

  1. I definitely agree with you that this is a non-story. The key phrase in that quote is “seems” that nobody knew where he was since thursday. Well I'm sure he told somebody where he was going. This is whole non=story stems from reporters frothing at the mouth to get instant gratification, the governor was never neglecting his duties, in fact he was never really missing at all, he was just out of touch with reporters for a few days, something that every American, including public figures, are entitled to. I mean let the guy have some time to clear his head and go for a hike!

  2. I guess from what I read I didn't quite see it that way until the Top of the Ticket post I include in the updates. My motivation for posting this was out of concern for his safety.

    He was actually out of touch with his staff. He had his cell phone turned off, and said he was hiking the Appalachian Trail which is rather large.

    So I'm not being critical, and I completely agree with you that he is entitled to down time.

    I'm glad he's ok.

  3. That is a good point about the safety issue. I suppose holders of public office have an obligation to keep their staff aware of where they are so as not to cause a public panic. But I feel like this was just over-hyped by his political enemies.

  4. It gets weirder…
    So now we hear that he's been a tourist in Buenos Aires and not hiking along the Appalachian Trail as his confused staff claimed. I don't consider this a non-story. Perhaps over-hyped but still legitimate.

  5. Oh the length some men will go to try and cover up an affair.

    Rather than argue the merits of the story, we all need to pray for Gov. Stanford and his family right now.

  6. It is over for us. I surrender. I give up. Gov Sanford has just given obama a free pass to do whatever he wants. And thanks to Sanford, obama now has a free ticket to 2012. My trust is shattered and my beliefs are lying in a heap at my feet. The progressives are beating down every good conservative value with a baseball bat and because of Sanford, they have good reason to. we are doomed as a nation. i am preparing for submissive socialism.

    maybe we deserve obama.

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