DC fundraiser for Sanford canceled after revelation of trespassing charges

Alexis Levinson | Political Reporter

A fundraiser for the congressional bid of former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford was canceled last week after a report that Sanford’s ex-wife had accused him of trespassing prompted national Republicans to withdraw support for his campaign.

According to an invitation obtained by The Daily Caller, the Republican members of the South Carolina congressional delegation — Sens. Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, and Reps. Trey Gowdy, Jeff Duncan, Mick Mulvaney, Tom Rice and Joe Wilson — were slated to be “special guests” at a Tuesday luncheon for Sanford at the Capitol Hill Club.

But on Monday, Sanford’s spokesman Joel Sawyer told TheDC that the event had been canceled Thursday of last week.

“We canceled the event last week since it was so close to the election date,” he emailed. “Governor Sanford is spending as much time as possible in the district.”

The special election is scheduled for May 7, two weeks from the date of the scheduled fundraiser.

The days leading up to the cancellation last week were tough for the former South Carolina governor. On Tuesday, it was reported that a lawyer for Sanford’s ex-wife Jenny Sanford had filed a complaint that Sanford trespassed at her house. The news, first reported by The Associated Press, took national Republicans by surprise, and the National Republican Congressional Committee announced Wednesday that they would not support Sanford’s congressional campaign.

Kirsten Borman, a Republican fundraiser listed as the contact for the event, did not respond to request for comment.

Sanford faces Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in the special election for the seat vacated by former Rep. Tim Scott, who was appointed to the Senate when former Sen. Jim DeMint resigned to become president of the conservative Heritage Foundation.

After the NRCC dropped Sanford, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee immediately made a $218,404 independent expenditure opposing Sanford to help Colbert Busch.

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