Rep.-elect Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) said Sunday he was looking forward to working with House Republican leaders in Congress, even after their campaign arm abandoned his comeback political bid.
Sanford said he has always had an "independent streak," but gave no indication that he planned to spurn GOP leaders once he was sworn in to the House.
"Past is past, and I look forward to working with the entire Republican team," he said on "Fox News Sunday." "I look very much towards working with Republicans."
Sanford went on to defeat Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in the election, and is expected to be sworn in to the House sometime next week.
Sanford, once a rising star in the Republican Party as South Carolina's governor, was embroiled in controversy after he admitted to an affair with an Argentinian woman, who he is now engaged to.
Sanford said he had learned from the event.
"You probably learn more in the valleys of life than you do on the mountaintop," he said. "Do the events of your life refine or define your life?"
Sanford said that once he is sworn into Congress, he is looking forward to digging in to the same issues he did previously as an elected official: trimming government spending and growing the economy.
"What I'm going to do is, in essence, look under the hood at a whole host of things," he said. "Another part of shrinking the deficit, it's not just tied to cutting spending. It's tied to growing the economy."