The Mark Sanford Fashion Statement

You’d think that having survived what looked like a career-destroying sex scandal in which his political judgment as well as his ethics was called into question, newly reminted congressman Mark Sanford (R-SC) would be keeping a very low profile. Not so, according to Roll Call‘s Emma Dumain, who posted this account of Sanford’s attire when he showed up to vote on the very high-profile Amash/Conyers amendment to the defense appropriations bill, apparently having just finished a workout:

The South Carolina Republican came into the Speaker’s Lobby sporting a sweat-soaked T-shirt, gym shorts and sneakers….

For the most part, he stayed sheepishly in one corner of the long hallway, hovering near one of the chamber doorways to monitor when he needed to run out onto the floor and cast his votes and trying to ignore giggling reporters.

Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, is a stickler for proper attire, and has been known to admonish male lawmakers from the dais for not wearing required jackets and ties. Sanford donned a blazer supplied by an aide when he had to go into the chamber, but took it off when he was in the Speaker’s Lobby, perhaps wanting to avoid taking it into the dry cleaner’s.

Dumain referred to this attire as “Mark Sanford’s New Business Casual.” At least it wasn’t hiking garb.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.