Two years ago, at this time, soon after the 2008 elections, Mark Sanford was prominently mentioned as a potential Republican presidential nominee. Then, in June of 2009, Sanford, the governor of South Carolina, told his wife, family, and political staff that he planned to hike part of the Appalachian Trail. However, as we know, he somehow got diverted and ended up exercising in Argentina with Maria Belen Chapur instead. He held a press conference that will be long-remembered as an exercise in political suicide, where he discussed not merely his ongoing relationship with Chapur, he admitted to other ‘flirtations’ and would not state that the relationship had ended. A video of the press conference follows.

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, seen in an October 29, 2008 file photo at a Committee on Ways and Means hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, admitted to an extramarital affair on June 24, 2009, after he disappeared from South Carolina for a week, secretly traveling to Argentina with his mistress. (UPI Photo/Alexis C. Glenn/File) Photo via Newscom

CHARLESTON, SC - FEBRUARY 26: Jenny Sanford talks to the media at the Charleston County Courthouse after she was granted a divorce on grounds of adultery from South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford February 26, 2010 in Charleston, South Carolina. Sanford's divorce will become final next month, approximately a year after it was discovered that South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford was having an affair with an Argentine woman. (Photo by Mary Ann Chastain/Getty Images)

His personal life suffered ramifications as his wife Jenny eventually dumped him. He faced political consequences as well. Political chatter naming him as a national force stopped immediately, other than some pretty funny jokes. He faced ethics charges questioning how the intercontinental excursions were paid for, what was accomplished during the trips, and whether these accomplishments counted as official state business.

Well, a long time has passed now. We find that Sanford has recovered a great deal, at least politically. South Carolina announced that the governor would not face any ethics charges. He has successfully brought a number of jobs to the state, including a huge Boeing plant. The people in South Carolina have forgiven him for his indiscretions, giving him higher approval ratings than those of Lindsey Graham, a Republican Senator from the state. Now, he is considering a run for office as his term as governor comes to an end. Just as an aside, I can’t think of more fun than a primary where Sanford faced his ex-wife. As a policeman friend once told me, the worst call was a domestic disturbance, because they’ll both go crazy at the same time. Just think about how much fun it would be at a debate where Jenny shows up with the kids in one section of the audience, while Mark brings Chapur on stage after the event to introduce the two ladies to each other.