Disgraced Nevada Senator John Ensign held a news conference on Tuesday in Las Vegas to break the news of his extra-marital affair to his constituents. It turns out that the 2012 Republican presidential hopeful engaged in a romantic affair with 46-year-old Cynthia Hampton, campaign treasurer and the wife of his one-time aide Douglas Hampton.
The affair, which is reported to have spanned November 2006 to May 2008, was reportedly no secret to Ensign’s wife Darlene Ensign. She was not at his side at the Lloyd George Federal Building but did issue a statement declaring that the couple’s marriage is “stronger” after he came clean about his affair to her. They have attended counseling and continue to be committed to each other.
Ensign read the following from a prepared statement: “I came back home to Nevada to come forward to explain to the citizens of our state something I was involved in about a year ago. Last year I had an affair. I violated the vows of our marriage. It is absolutely the worst thing I have ever done in my life.”
The senator from Nevada is, interestingly enough, a member of Promise Keepers–a group that promotes marital fidelity. He was very critical of Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal, calling for the President to resign.
Ensign was a veterinarian who owned several animal hospitals before entering into the political arena. He is the father of three children; Trevor, Siena and Michael. His father, Michael S. Ensign, is the chairman of the board of directors of Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Ensign isn’t the only politician caught flinging. South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford has been carrying on a year long affair with a woman from Argentina. He was busted by The State, the largest newspaper in South Carolina this morning at an Atlanta airport – see details and video here.
View photos of the Ensign family below. A presidential fundraiser planned for Friday has also been postponed.