Herman Cain is getting it from all sides today as sexual harassment allegations from the ’90s are cutting into his campaign style. Lots of questions: how much will this damage his campaign? Do sexual harassment claims really stick like they used to? Only polls by week’s end will tell. But, it’s important to consider: do GOP primary voters really care about an allegation like this? Maybe it won’t be as important to them, just like the Rick Perry “Niggerhead Ranch” story seemed to fall flat as far as Republican voters were concerned (the only Republican that seemed to care was Cain, and with his scandal surfacing, maybe he was hoping back then that it would stick as a way to keep his stuff buried. Remember: this is not a Democratic primary. The electorate is dominated by White men and seniors. So, we’ll see what happens.
POLITICO puts its dream team on it and breaks the story …
During Herman Cain’s tenure as the head of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s, at least two female employees complained to colleagues and senior association officials about inappropriate behavior by Cain, ultimately leaving their jobs at the trade group, multiple sources confirm to POLITICO.
The women complained of sexually suggestive behavior by Cain that made them angry and uncomfortable, the sources said, and they signed agreements with the restaurant group that gave them financial payouts to leave the association. The agreements also included language that bars the women from talking about their departures.
The Examiner’s Byron York looks at the Cain Team response …
Herman Cain’s campaign headquarters has released a response to a story, broken this evening on Politico, that in the 1990s two female employees of the National Restaurant Association “complained to colleagues and senior association officials about inappropriate behavior by Cain,” who at the time was head of the trade group.
Calling the story “thinly sourced allegations,” Cain spokesman J.D. Gordon said: “Since Washington establishment critics haven’t had much luck in attacking Mr. Cain’s ideas to fix a bad economy and create jobs, they are trying to attack him in any way they can.” Gordon did not address any of the specific allegations in the report. Asked for a more specific answer, the campaign did not provide details.
American Spectator’s Jeffrey Lord wants to stir up Clarence Thomas nostalgia …
An “Exclusive” story about Herman Cain. A story about a black man who is a conservative and just by coincidence is now riding high in the presidential polls. A story about anonymous women making allegations of sexual harassment against Mr. Cain. And getting bucks for their efforts.
Women who won a “settlement” for the charges, which are said to be centering on “inappropriate behavior” by Mr. Cain during his tenure as the head of the National Restaurant Association.
That’s all there appears to be.
But shall we recall another time?
When a sitting President of the United States, a white liberal, was accused by multiple women of not only sexual harassment… but rape?
And the sum and substance of the response from his supporters was that these kind of charges were only about sex. Just one big no deal. To be specific in terms of the response from one James Carville of Clinton advisory fame:
“Drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find.”
But, fam, wait: it gets better. Cain not only has women issues – he might have campaign and tax law issues, too.
Reports Daniel Bice in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel …
Herman Cain’s two top campaign aides ran a private Wisconsin-based corporation that helped the GOP presidential candidate get his fledgling campaign off the ground by originally footing the bill for tens of thousands of dollars in expenses for such items as iPads, chartered flights and travel to Iowa and Las Vegas – something that might breach federal tax and campaign law, according to sources and documents.
Internal financial records obtained by No Quarter show thatProsperity USA said it was owed about $40,000 by the Cain campaign for a variety of items in February and March. Cain began taking donations for his presidential bid on Jan. 1.
Prosperity USA was owned and run by Wisconsin political operativesMark Block and Linda Hansen, Cain’s current chief of staff and deputy chief of staff, respectively.