South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford re-appeared Wednesday, following a week long mysterious disappearance, saying that he had been in Argentina and admitted to an extramarital affair.

Sanford, who has been seen as a potential candidate for the 2012 U.S. presidential election, admitted in a Columbia news conference that he had developed a relationship with someone in Argentina during the past year.

The governor tearfully apologized several times to the people of South Carolina, his wife, family and friends.

The woman, who lives in Argentina, has been a dear, dear friend for about eight years but, according to Sanford, the relationship only became romantic just over a year ago.

I'm going to resign as chairman of the Republican Governors' Association, said Sanford, who is a prominent fiscal conservative and has been talked about as a potential presidential candidate for his party.

The Governor made no mention about whether he will resign from his post as governor.

Mr. Sanford is the second politician within about a week to divulge an extramarital affair. Last week, Senator John Ensign, Republican of Nevada, disclosed that he had had a relationship with someone who worked on his campaign staff.