| A guide to|
|Hail to the Chief?|
|Persons of interest|
Mark Sanford (R-SC) is a well-known "values" politician who managed to invent a whole new euphemism without even uttering it. He has also praised the economic policies of Ayn Rand. First representing South Carolina in the United States House of Representatives from 1995 to 2001, he later served as governor from 2003 to 2011. In 2019, he launched a presidential bid which lasted 66 days before being quietly ended, as no one cared.
That's not what they called it back in my day
After going missing for several days in 2009 (during which his staff tried their damnedest to pretend he wasn't), it turned out he was having an affair with a woman in Argentina. As the most publicized cover story his staff could come up with was "hiking the Appalachian trail," the phrase entered the political lexicon as a euphemism for a secret tryst (tryst itself meaning; "When people are sneaking to meet, notably as secret lovers"). The staff did not know that it was "Naked Hiking Day."
Most notable was his reaction to being caught. Instead of trotting out the children and wife, and begging forgiveness, he instead blubbered through how the woman he was having an affair with was his soul-mate, but also how much he regretted hurting his (rich) wife. In many ways, it sounded like a man who was truly wrestling with the fact that his heart and his religion didn't mesh. Not that it lasted long; he is back to being a "values" dick.
Speaking to the engagement level of his constituency and state representatives, he not only avoided impeachment for his lying and misuse of public funds, he was also elected back to the United States House of Representatives in 2012.
Pointless 2020 presidential bid
On 8 September 2019, Sanford went on Fox News Sunday to announce his 2020 primary challenge to Donald Trump. He told NPR that "I think that the Republican Party has lost its way on what were traditional benchmarks to what the party had been about."  He failed to ever gain any sorta traction what so ever. His first big campaign event, kicking off his "Kids, We’re Bankrupt and We Didn’t Even Know It” tour, had an attendance of 1.[note 1]
On 12 November 2019, Sanford announced he would be ending his efforts to take the Republican nomination from Trump. Sanford blamed the impeachment inquiry due to it interfering with "making the debt, deficit and spending issue a part of this presidential debate impossible right now." Sure. That was the problem. He lasted 66 days.[note 2]
- Hiking the Appalachian Trail alone, is it safe enough? Substitute the euphemism in the "Other Answers" section for the lulz.
- Not counting his two aides, like five reporters/camera people, the random family about 30 feet (9.14 meters) away and a group of French school students who were passing through the park who were confused by his big check.
- Want to know how pointless this 66 day presidential bid was? This entire section was written on 12 October, 2019, after he announced he was ending his bid. Literally nobody cared.
- 10 famous Appalachian Trail hikers, Mother Nature Network
- Sanford disappears to hike Appalachian Trail (on Naked Hiking Day)
- "Insufferable" doesn't begin to describe it.
- Keith, Tamara. NPR. 8 September 2019. Mark Sanford Says He'll Challenge Trump For President, But That Just Got Harder to Do.
- Orso, Anna. The Philadelphia Inquirer. 16 October 2019. Mark Sanford kicked off his presidential campaign against Donald Trump in Philly. One person showed up..
- Taylor, Jessica. NPR. 12 November 2019.Mark Sanford Ends His Primary Challenge Against President Trump.