Even though he’s in the middle of a sex scandal, Herman Cain’s campaign fundraising machine shows no sign of slowing down. His team just announced that it raised nearly $1 million dollars in the past four days – not too shabby for a guy looking down the barrel of relentless media scrutiny and an endless string of accusations.
Clearly, supporters seem undeterred by allegations of sexual harassment from up to three women (by last count) … and counting. Just Thursday, conservative blog Pajama Media posted an account of a woman who says she actually slept with Cain and “… was taken advantage of” by him in his corporate apartment. But, she’s afraid to come forward out of fear of what the media attention could do to her reputation.
The continuing and unwavering support may also be a sign that Cain may not be the victim of a political phenomenon known as the Bradley effect, as some observers have predicted. Named for former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley – the city’s first Black executive – Bradley narrowly lost his bid for Governor of California despite polling surveys prior to Election Night which showed him in double digit position to win over his White opponent. For various reasons, White voters just couldn’t bring themselves to vote for a man who would’ve become the first Black governor of that state.
Last week, the Washington Post focused in on pollster Peter Holt’s survey of a focus group of likely Iowa caucus Republican voters. Each said they liked Cain, what he stood for and supported the campaign. However, when asked whether they could see Cain in the White House no one raised his or her hand.
So, what was that all about? The results could easily drum up suspicions of GOP-inspired Bradley Effect, whereby some White Republicans (by far the dominant group in that party) are merely expressing their support for Cain outwardly in order to deflect accusation that hatred for Obama is because of his race. The typical response goes something like this: “How can I be racist when I support this Black man?”
But, the jury is still out on whether they will actually go through with it and take that next step. Will Republican primary voters seriously cast that ballot?
In the meantime, with a new crisis management team on board and in control and the dollars still pouring in, there’s still a chance Cain could survive this scandal. Only time and an accuser going public will tell.