Posts Tagged ‘Herman Cain’

I like Herman Cain. I like his forthrightness, his energy, and his ideas. They are all great. And I love his sense of humor. We haven’t had anybody with his sense of timing since Ronald Reagan. I have laughed out loud numerous times at some of Cain’s statements, which has added positively to the long, arduous process of picking Obama’s replacement.

I also like the idea of supporting a conservative black candidate. Sorry, but that’s exactly the way I feel, and there are a lot of people who feel the same way.  Like most conservatives, when someone I like is criticized, I stand behind them.

When the first woman came forward accusing Cain of sexual misconduct, I didn’t believe a word she said. With Gloria Allred right by his accuser’s side, the entire episode looked like a sleazy left-wing conspiracy to defame a good man.  He didn’t lose me there—not one bit. If anything, my support strengthened.

Following that, when the two cases of sexual harassment surfaced, I was stunned and shaken. When I learned that the women had received settlements, I stopped my support for Cain. There were two reasons why I did.

First, if there were no measure of guilt, why would Cain settle? If he was completely innocent, paying off these women was the wrong thing to do. By making a payment, he sealed his own fate, which would eventually derail his presidential candidacy more than a decade later. It was as good as making a nolo contendere plea in court, which is the same thing as being guilty—just not admitting it, which is exactly what Cain did.

The latest bombshell, coming from Ginger White, has made his continuation in the process untenable. It’s not just that he had an affair. Many Presidents have done that, and some of them have been good leaders. It’s that Cain lied about it, which is the second reason I’ve stopped supporting him. He has a character problem, and character counts in presidential politics, especially for conservatives. How can you follow someone you can no longer trust?

To me, it looks like Cain has deceived us all along, and that’s the kiss of death for a presidential candidate. He has a pattern of behavior in his personal life that is unacceptable, and he has lied about it all along, making his supporters look foolish and naive. No other explanation makes sense.

This means he has to drop out of the race, and if he has any sense, he will do it quickly. I’m sorry Herman, but it’s time to go.

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Our selection process for picking a Presidential candidate is so flawed; we have become unable to choose the best man or woman for the job. We don’t even look for the best person. Instead, we scrutinize candidates, looking for the one with the least flaws or negative baggage.

If our current methodology were operational throughout our history, many of our best leaders never would have survived the process. For example:

  • Thomas Jefferson, who had a slave concubine and plagiarized much of the Declaration of Independence from John Locke, would never have been taken seriously. The media would have crucified him.
  • Abraham Lincoln, who fought depression his entire life, would have been considered unstable and, therefore, unfit to lead.
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was the allied commander in Europe during World War II and responsible for defeating Hitler, maintained a mistress who traveled with him throughout the war as his secretary. He left his wife, Mamie, back home in Kansas. He would have been considered morally unfit to lead.
  • John F. Kennedy’s profligacy, which included movie stars, would never have survived the finger pointing of his rivals in the primaries.

There are many other good Presidents who would not have been electable, while many weak leaders would have survived, including Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama—the two worst Presidents in my lifetime. To be fair, mediocre Presidents like George W. Bush and Richard Nixon also would have survived. So would most of the Presidents of the late-nineteenth century—the ones nobody can remember.

The point is this: the mediocre survive the process. As finger pointing has become the norm, it seems that few ask the fundamental question, “Can the candidate in question lead us in perilous times or not?”

Take the current crop of Republicans for instance. If you’re going to choose—based on knit picking and who is safe—Romney is your guy. He is a good, safe bet—straight down the middle, as mediocre as they come. He looks good; he’s affable; and he will be whatever you want him to be—just as long as he thinks it will bring him victory. He’s the poster boy for playing the role of a Presidential candidate.

Herman Cain’s popularity, which has certainly peaked, is an exciting candidate. I love his honesty and his candor. By paying those women for their sexual harassment suits, however, his goose was cooked before he ever started. That’s as good as a nolo contendere plea. Actually, I’m not as concerned about the sexual discrimination issue as I am about his competency to lead. Frankly, I don’t think he can do it—nor can Bachmann or Santorum. Ron Paul’s followers are as faithful as hound dogs, but he’s a fringe player—just like Ralph Nader and Ross Perot were in the past.

That leaves two others—Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich. Both have real records, which are impressive. Newt’s baggage appears to be more extensive, but he’s been in national politics much longer than Perry. The Texas Governor has an impressive record leading America’s second largest state, which is important, but he seems ill prepared in many areas.

That leaves Newt who hasn’t gone out of his way to impress me with his conservative credentials, but I still remember how he led the charge to turn the nation around in the mid-nineties. We need someone to do that again, and I believe he can. What has impressed me the most is his knowledge. He’s capable of leading us in turbulent times. I’m certain of it. Finally, I believe he’s eaten enough crow to know he doesn’t want to make a fool out of himself again, but only time will tell.

—Jack Watts


  • What do you think of this editorial? Be specific with your comments.
  • Do we pick the safest candidate or the best one?
  • Which Republican candidate would make the best leader? Why?
  • Is Herman Cain’s candidacy finished?
  • Can Rick Perry’s candidacy make resurgence? If so, how?

If you want to join the discussion, go to http://webelieveamerica.com/forum/topics/who-will-be-the-republican-presidential-candidate and let your voice be heard.

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