“I apologize to my staff,” Sanford said in a statement released after the 2 p.m. news conference. “I misled them about my whereabouts, and as a result the people of South Carolina believed something that wasn’t true. I want to make absolutely clear that over the past two days at no time did anyone on my staff intentionally relay false information to other state officials or the public at large. What they’ve said over the past two days they believed to be true, and I’m sorry to them for putting them in this position.”
Soon after the press conference ended, the RGA announced that Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour – another potential 2012 candidate for the GOP – would be stepping in to fill Sanford’s previous role as chairman.
“The news revealed today hurts all of us who have gotten to know Governor Sanford over the years and so it is with regret that the RGA accepted Governor Sanford’s resignation as chairman,” Barbour said in a statement. “While this news is deeply disappointing, I also know it’s important to remain focused on the future and Governor Sanford’s resignation allows him and us to do just that.”