I remember in the middle of the Clinton/Monica scandal, a conservative talk show host said, “Hey, Mr. President, cut it out.  We’re trying to raise children out here.”

He’s still a talk show host, but he doesn’t use that line anymore.  His own party has a host of not-for-family-viewing issues.

The Mark Sanford turn around has become commonplace.  Newt Gingrich operates in the top circle of Republican Party politics. Larry (wide stance) Craig served out his term after being arrested for solisciting gay sex.

This is not to say Republican politicians have worse track records than Democrats.  It’s that Republicans claim to be the “family values” party.

That Republicans make such a dubious claim takes cheek.  It is a meaningless term.  It could have many meanings including endorsement of gay marriage.

The reelection of South Carolina’s Mark Sanford gives us an insight into the term “family values”.  It doesn’t really mean stable family life with one man and one woman and children.

Instead, it is code language for the idea, “We’ll always vote for a Republican and never for a Democrat.”  It is the code language of a clan.

The only consquence of Republicans reelecting and supporting liars, cheaters and adulteers is that they need to stop referring to themselves as the “family values” Party.  They need different code language.

If Democrats used as their code, “We are the Party for liberatarians,” they would have the same problem.   Fortunately,  Democrats have not been that dishonest.

http://douthat.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/09/mark-sanfords-god/