Mr. Sanford, 52 years old, has pulled off several unlikely feats in the revival of a political career that appeared to be over when he disappeared from the governor's mansion in 2009. Mr. Sanford was said to be hiking the Appalachian Trail but was instead in Argentina, visiting girlfriend Maria Belen Chapur.
In 2010, Mr. Sanford held off a Republican-led attempt at impeachment. In 2011, he finished out his term after resisting calls to step down and getting a messy divorce. Then, in March, Mr. Sanford fought off 15 other Republicans in the GOP primary for the First District seat.
Most recently, he righted a campaign that appeared in free fall in mid-April after a report that his former wife, Jenny Sanford, had accused him of trespassing at her house. The former couple is expected to appear at a Thursday hearing on the trespassing matter.
The National Republican Congressional Committee dropped its support of Mr. Sanford, and other Republican leaders were slow to rally around him.
He won anyway.