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Mark Sanford Rejects Larry Flynt's Support in South Carolina Congressional Bid

Larry Flynt Main Image - H 2013
Frank W. Ockenfels 3
Larry Flynt

"First, you threw your wife overboard. Now you have tossed me aside," the publisher wrote to the former governor on Thursday.

Rejection never is easy to accept -- and, apparently, even wealthy publishers feel its sting.

On Thursday, former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford’s congressional campaign rejected the support and campaign contribution of flamboyant Beverly Hills-based Hustler publisher Larry Flynt, who in turn responded with a letter filled with sarcasm -- and a touch of faux sorrow.

“In a vain gesture to achieve respectability, your refusal to accept my endorsement and financial contribution of $2,600 for being America's great sex pioneer has hurt my tender feelings,” Flynt wrote. “First, you threw your wife overboard. Now you have tossed me aside. I will support you in spite of your hopeless posturing. Nothing can deter me. I came in to save you, like a member of SEAL Team 6, after the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) left you as road kill."

STORY: Larry Flynt Endorses Mark Sanford for Congress: 'He's The Sex Pioneer of Our Time' 

Sanford was the ultra-conservative, two-term governor who went AWOL from his office in 2009, claiming to be hiking the Appalachian Trail when, in fact, he was meeting his Argentine mistress. At the time, he was widely talked about as a future Republican presidential candidate. Subsequently, however, his wife -- who also happened to be his closest political advisor -- foreswore the stand-by-your-man pose and divorced him before penning a scathing memoir of their marriage.

Earlier this week, Flynt announced his support of Sanford -- who is locked in a tight battle with Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert’s sister, Elizabeth Colbert Busch -- and hailed the GOP candidate’s blow to “traditional morality.”

“I would remind you Governor, that beggars cannot be choosers," Flynt wrote to Sanford on Thursday. "While you have treated me like you have your former wife, you embrace Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) and proudly brandish his endorsement. But now the intelligent voters of South Carolina's 1st District are asking whether or not you support Sen. Paul's positions in favor of legalizing marijuana and deploying drones within the United States. Is there anyone you wish to target on Hilton Head?"

Flynt added: “Regardless of your answers to these and other questions, however reckless, dangerous or euphoric, I will always remain your staunchest supporter for the blow you have struck against traditional values. I will never divorce you.”

Sanford's spokesman could not be reached for comment.