Former S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford, a rising political star before being disgraced following the discovery of an affair, has proposed to his Argentinian "soulmate."
Argentina's largest newspaper reported on its website, clarin.com, on Friday that Sanford proposed to Maria Belen Chapur at a Buenos Aires restaurant on Wednesday. The report says that Bella Italia Grill in the Palermo neighborhood is one of Chapur's favorite restaurants.
Sanford did not mention the engagement when he spoke to Patch political editor Shawn Drury on Wednesday evening.
The article, written in Spanish and translated by Patch, says that Sanford got to the restaurant earlier than Chapur and gave a purse with the engagement ring inside to a waiter. He went and hid in the bathroom and waited for Chapur for more than an hour.
When she arrived, the waiter told her she had won a prize for being the 100th customer of the day. When she opened the bag and saw the ring, Sanford came out of the restaurant bathroom and declared his love.
"What followed were long minutes of kisses, tears and emotions. There were words of affection and promises of eternity," the newspaper says.
Sanford was believed by many to be a future GOP presidential nominee when he went missing in 2009. Staffers told the media that the governor was hiking the Appalachian Trail, but it was soon discovered that he had been in Argentina with Chapur.
He declared his love for her soon after, called her his soulmate, and his marriage to Jenny Sanford ended in divorce.