Mark, Jenny Sanford to probably duke it out in South Carolina

On Monday, Nikki Haley named Tim Scott to fill Jim DeMint’s Senate seat, which he vacated when he realized that he could get a better job that pays more if he wasn’t pretending to care about the country. Tim Scott, for his part, immediately ran afoul of everyone who thinks black people should be Democrats if they want to continue to be considered to be black people, despite the fact that Tim Scott is, demonstrably, a black person.

But his term will end pretty soon – with the next election cycle – so the race is on to see which South Carolina resident would be the least acceptable replacement for Jim DeMint. Unfortunately, Nikki Haley has already oppo’ed out Stephen Colbert, so we’re left with only a small slate of famous South Carolinians.

But thankfully, it’s a willing slate.

Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford is mulling a congressional comeback, with sources saying he might join the special election contest for Rep. Tim Scott’s soon-to-be-vacant House seat.

Sanford is “studying” a run for the Charleston-area, GOP-leaning 1st District, which he occupied in the 1990s, said one South Carolina source. The seat will soon be vacant because Republican Gov. Nikki R. Haley on Monday selected freshman Republican Scott to succeed Sen. Jim DeMint, who is resigning in January, just two years into his second term.

In case you don’t remember, Mark Sanford is the disgraced former governor of South Carolina who disappeared for large swaths of time during his tenure. He claimed the trips were “hiking vacations” where he would get lost in the Appalachian Mountains, find himself, and return with a fresh outlook on life and a heavier commitment to uncovering the true Buddha within himself. In reality, he was visiting his Argentinian mistress. But now, apparently that his Argentinian mistress is soon to be his Argentinian wife, Mark feels he can comfortably re-enter the political sphere, at least until his next International whim takes him.

Unfortunately for Mark, though, his competition is fierce, and their vendetta? Personal.

Emerging as a possible candidate is former South Carolina first lady Jenny Sanford — Mark Sanford’s ex-wife — who lives in the 1st District. One Palmetto State GOP strategist said Haley would likely back Jenny Sanford, who was on the governor’s short list of possible Senate appointees, if she decides to run.

“Nikki’s endorsement won’t be far behind,” the strategist said.

Nice. And awesome. And given that the only other announced candidate is the son of famed segregationist Strom Thurmond, probably a great shot at long-term success and the possible ability to have Mark Sandford’s new wife’s visa denied.

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