The Other Women

By Howard Kurtz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, July 1, 2009; 9:16 AM

It seemed like Mark Sanford had slowly and painfully let it all hang out.

Turns out he hadn't.

Now we're into the drip-drip-drip portion of the scandal. Sanford admitted to more contacts with Maria Belen Chapur -- not just in Argentina -- and "some physical contact" with other women.

First lady Jenny Sanford, the ball is in your court.

I know, none of this is as important as the U.S. military completing its pullback from major Iraqi cities yesterday, but that has been all but overshadowed in the post-Michael Jackson media.

The Sanford saga has sparked more of a national conversation about public officials and infidelity than just about any episode since Monicagate. I mean, who can still remember what John Ensign did? (For the record, he slept with a former campaign treasurer who was married to a former top aide.)

But the South Carolina governor has struck a nerve for several reasons:

a) His "Appalachian Trail" disappearance

b) His choice of an Argentine lover

c) His stream-of-consciousness press conference

d) His wife hanging him out to dry, especially after he asked permission to visit his gal pal

e) His endless apologizing

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