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Sanford resolution might go to panel

The first steps to the possible impeachment of Gov. Mark Sanford are expected next week and could be headed to a special committee.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Harrison of Columbia said Thursday it is up to House Speaker Bobby Harrell to decide how to handle a resolution already drafted to remove Sanford because he abandoned the state for five days in June to rendezvous with his Argentine lover.

Harrison said he would set up a special committee within the Judiciary Committee to handle impeachment if the speaker sends state Rep. Greg Delleney's resolution to his committee.

Sanford spokesman Ben Fox said he is "not going to speculate or weigh in on anything the House may or may not do next week."

Some say Sanford may avoid impeachment because the state landed an expansion of a Boeing aircraft plant in North Charleston. Others say Sanford's fate rests on a State Ethics Commission review of his use of state planes for personal and political purposes.

House spokesman Greg Foster said the House expects to see that review when it is delivered to Sanford.