Should 12-year-old sexual harassment charge ruin Cain’s candidacy?
November 2nd, 2011
01:44 PM ET

Should 12-year-old sexual harassment charge ruin Cain’s candidacy?

FROM CNN'S Jack Cafferty:

Herman Cain is just the latest politician in a long line to have a potential sex scandal damage his career.

There's been a lot of sordidness in our political past - but not all of it has been fatal.

Most famously, former President Bill Clinton was impeached over the Monica Lewinsky scandal but was acquitted in the Senate. He went on to finish his second term and has maintained a high-profile after leaving office.

Of course, not every politician has survived such troubles.

Remember former Rep. Anthony Weiner of New York, one-time presidential hopeful John Edwards, former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer or former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, who made up that ridiculous story about hiking the Appalachian Trail when he was really with his lover in Argentina.

There are many more. Some of them still crawling around in Congress.

The key in Cain's case is we still don't know all the facts - although his clumsy handling of the incident certainly hasn't helped him.

Cain has changed his story multiple times since news broke Sunday that two women accused him of sexual harassment when he led the National Restaurant Association in the late 1990s.

But it's unclear how much the allegations will damage his campaign if at all.

There are no polls yet taken entirely after the accusations came to light, although Cain was at the top of the Republican field in the past few weeks.

The story seems to be rallying the base. Cain's campaign says it took in more than $400,000 online Monday alone. That's no chump change.

Also, several high-profile conservatives are sticking by him. They're blaming the media and racism - which, of course, is always convenient.

Here's my question to you: Should allegations of sexual harassment more than 12 years ago cost Herman Cain his run for the White House?

Tune in to "The Situation Room" at 4 p.m. ET to see if Jack reads your answer on the air.

And we'd love to know where you're writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.

Filed under: 2012 Election • Herman Cain
soundoff (249 Responses)
  1. Stephen Charchuk

    If I were Cain and a reporter kept asking me the same question after I had said that I wouldn't be answering it I would say to them; "Excuse me, are you retarded?" And I don't like Republicans. I can see that this is a non-issue. Just because Wolf got lucky with Wiener doesn't mean that he is right with Cain.

    November 2, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
  2. Larry -Denver

    Nah! why dont we just let Herman Cain stand on his fine political record. How about judge Thomas, Clinton etc. The record needs to speak, wouldn't hurt if Cain could start being honest clear the record.

    November 2, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
  3. MNResident

    Get the EVIDENCE on the table (and not just allegations), and then most of the people will decide. Right now, it is just the heavy partisans weighing in. Time (and the facts) will make the ultimate decision.....

    November 2, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
  4. deno

    Note: A 12 year old case concerning a settlement out of court is about as relevant as my last bowel movement. Rather, perhaps you people should begin doing real news and check into Cain's illegal acceptance of nonprofit assets. If the sexual harassment issue is to become anything but a diversion from real illegalities committed by the Cain campaign, the accusing agents must come forward. Absent such interlocutory dialog, it is merely another case of a bully with a pulpit, standing solo, creating "truth" as he goes. Such is meaningless as a news story and reflects the idiocy of both the press and population. Ya might as well cover the Kardashian divorce and how god speaks to my fricken dog...Geez!

    November 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  5. pat, Idaho

    Was anything proved 12 yrs. ago? Let dead dogs lay. No

    November 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  6. s in fl

    If that's what it takes to quit talking about this unqualified bonehead, Jack.
    But we sure could use him in DOD to stop the Chinese from building nukes.

    November 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  7. Noel Sivertson Roswell New Mexico.

    That will be up to the voters. If the women who charged Herman Cain with sexual harassment are allowed to tell thier side then the voters can make up their minds. If they are not released from their non-disclosure contracts then it will look like Cain and the National Restaurant Association has something to hide.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
  8. Bob D Iowa

    No Jack the fact that he did or didn't have a wrong doing 12 years ago should not effect anything. It is the lying that he has done since Sunday that proves he is worthless. And for all of the Republicans that are saying these are attacks from the left, Ha You Repubs are eating your own..

    November 2, 2011 at 2:03 pm |
  9. Rick McDaniel

    That depends on whether the charges can be substantiated or not. So far, they haven't been, and until they are, and it is clear there was intent on the part of Cain, which also remains to be seen, i don't think it will. After all.......Clinton was shown to have had extra marital affairs, when he ran for office.......and he was elected......and then he did the same thing right in the oval office!

    I don't think most voters, care too much about their candidates sexual activities.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  10. Cheryl in Bluffton, SC

    This will only help Cain, who is playing the race card and the liberal media card at the same time. What will sink him is his lack of good policy ideas, ignorance of government and lack of desire to learn.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  11. Brad, Portland, OR

    As you pointed out, sex scandals have ruined the careers of many people. The argument is always that it shows the person had "poor judgement." I don't know why Herman Cain should be immune from the consequences of his actions if Bill Clinton, Anthony Weiner, Eliot Spitzer, etc. weren't.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  12. deno

    PS–the Clinton situation (and as I wrote you then Jack) was an apple compared to this orange: Ms. Lewinsky was, shall we say: consenting. And as I pointed out at the time: Articles of Impeachment were issued. President Clinton was never "impeached". Rather, such "articles" are referrals to the Senate. Hell, the House can refer on any matter about which the muster enough partisan support. Hey, we just wasted the people's time in confirming that "In God We Trust" is our national motto. What's next? Confirming that the USA flag has 50 stars? Well, it's a damn good thing there are no serious problems requiring congressional attention in this country. GEEZ!
    Note: Paula Jones was a credible as Romney on (___________) [Fill in the blank.]

    November 2, 2011 at 2:08 pm |
  13. Jane in CA

    As a woman, I know the difference between consensual sex and workplace harassment. I am also old enough to remember when being propositioned was ignored by HR (unless you were the one fired). That was about three decades before 12 years ago, and Cain surely should have known better by then. So, yeah, if the charges are accurate, then he is a slug, and no one I would want to be the leader of my country. His policy positions are far more pertinent to his run for president, and from my perspective, a far greater disqualifier. Also remember the cover-up and denials are more damning that the acts themselves. Unless you think that lying is a requirement for presidential candidates.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
  14. Pete in Georgia

    Are you kidding ??
    At least Cain HAS a past ??
    Can anyone out there tell us what our current president was doing 12 years ago ??
    Anyone ??
    Anything ??
    I didn't think so.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
  15. Pat in Michigan

    no of course not. Look ! The former Vice President shot a man in the face.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  16. Susan UP of MI

    Yes, but only because he keeps saying "I don't recall". His campaign had 10 days to look into the matter & that was their best answer!?! That in itself tells me there is more to this than they want revealed.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
  17. James in Springfield, VA

    Yes and the reason is because he cannot be truthful about it. The guy answers the question has if he is Rick Perry trying to find a solution in that small mind of his. He brought this all on himself and he deserves the bashing he gets....not the presidency. Maybe if he had been more forth coming he could have avoided this mess nut now he has given the GOP a reason to dump him.....like he ever had a chance in hell of winning anyways. He is only doing this to keep his campaign money.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:12 pm |
  18. Pat in Michigan

    No of course not. Look ! The former Vice President shot a man in the face.INTHEFACE!!!.Nothing was done.Why would some potential gold digger affect his candidicy?
    Everyone knows politicians are crooked .This distraction wil have no effect whatsoever

    November 2, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  19. Evinia Bruce

    naw... won't do much ...never understood why a candidate's PRIOR sex life has ANYTHING to do with how they do their job .once they are in government and on the public's dole then they should be doing the job they were elected to do ...but since that idea is now an anachronism ...who cares??
    i'm sure most Americans out of work would't give a fig [unless they are those NOSE-IN-YOUR-BEDROOM sexual repressed TB'S.].. ..as long as that representative provides a job ... only in America !..Europeans have better things to worry about .
    . basically it has become a tool in the "political bag of dirty tricks".knowing they can whip the sheeple into a frenzy of moral indignation ...

    November 2, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  20. Jayne in NH

    No. His lack of knowledge about things such as foreign affairs should. This is a shallow man with a book selling agenda and he shouldn't be taken seriously.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  21. Rich McKinney, Texas

    Jack we do not even know if Cain did anything wrong. No one has told us yet what he is suppose to have done. The media is full of speculation but no facts. Most people call that a witch hunt. What's worse is that the media does not care if it drags two women through the mud in an attempt to dig something up. Hell Jack one of your co-workers could file a sexual harassment complaint on you and it would not mater if you had done anything or not. Your name would be drug through the mud and your career potentially ruined. The burden of proof would be on you. Sexual harassment can be anything or nothing but if these 2 women were seriously victims then why settle for a few thousand dollars?

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  22. Nate NC

    Racism? Didn't Cain himself mention something about Affirmative Action? Anyways, Obama is a source of pride for African-Americans mostly because of his oratorical skills, character, and his clean track record of sexual scandals. This current sexual harassment charge means nothing to Cain's candidacy, but instead, what matters is the way he is dealing with it. That is because now he is demonstrating he has none of the above traits. Somebody will vote for him, but not as many African-Americans.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  23. Lori - PA


    Because of a confidentiality agreement, we don't even know the whole story. Until we do, no one should be passing judgement. The media should be focusing on where Herman Cain stands on turning the economy around, and creating jobs. If Herman Cain does win the Republican nomination, and/or there is more to the sexual harassment alligations, that's when it should be addressed.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  24. Rick, Medina, OH


    Regardless of the truth of the allegations, Mr. Cain is not helping himself with his handling of the matter. After all, elections are really decided by the 'Court of Public Opinion.'


    November 2, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  25. Tom Bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    No, and that isn't what will tank his "campaign." If people couldn't tolerate Palin, and Bachmann's level of ignorance, why would they in Cain's case?

    Romney isn't popular, but at least he seems to read the paper and watch the news. That's a bigger factor in weighing up someone as presidential than a history of sexual harassment.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  26. David in Tampa

    Citizen Cain ruined his chances with me when he said that everyone that wants a job should be able to get one, and that if you're not rich it is your own fault. Several of our past presidents have had hormone issues in the presence of certain ladies, no surprise there. I feared this would be a perpetual problem once the Republicans let this multiple headed snake out of the viper pit 'cause it has bitten Democrats and Republicans alike. But now that the issue has been raised, let us hear from all parties involved so everyone can make up his or her mind as to what impact, if any, it will have on how to vote in the primaries and the general election if he gains the party nomination.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  27. Terry Wells -Hoosier Hillbilly-Greensburg,IN

    NO convictions, no charges, no witnesses, just allegations of sexual harassment . If I was him i'd ignore the subject.
    9-9-9 is much more concerning for me, if it effects me I want to know more.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  28. Evelyn Berryhill

    The thing is if this will happen again if he win the president. We have a president that let his flesh control him and how is this good for the United States.

    Evelyn Berryhill
    Memphis TN.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  29. Rex in Portland, Oregon

    Like everything else that involves money, authority, or power, sexual harrassment is now and always has been blown way out of proportion. Unwanted advances, usually sexual innuendos served as interest lead-ins, are not harrassment by any definition of the term except when there is money to gain or authority to topple. Repeated advances or innuendos when rebuffed (obviously or not) constitute harrassment of a sexual nature. The inability of "justice" to distinguish between interest and harrassment is perpetuated by this new faux "Christian" ethic and some weird interpretations of the teachings of John or Paul. This is un-American and should stop.

    Cain wasn't charged with harrassment, but misconduct. His mistake was that the women he conversed with resented his power, his color, his gender, or his breath and sought revenge. He had no way of knowing they felt that way until it was too late. "Justice" rules in his case were, and are, unfortunate, because no justice was served. St. John or the Pope can condemn all they want, but they go too far in foisting this narrowminded crap off on the rest of us.

    Of course Cain will be hurt by rehashing these charges. Of course he will survive them politically, since we Americans can see past the almighty dollar easily and are willing to forgive a man his "sins". But the Roves of the world will continue to stir up lies and half-truths and keep uncovering black babies in S. C. and swift boats, and unimagined Ken Starrs will pop up to distract everyone with witch hunts.

    I apologize, Jack, for losing my sense of humor on this question and going all philosophical on ya'. I realize that anything over 170 characters cancels the effectiveness of a sound bite in this society. I should stick with Tweeter.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  30. Greg in Arkansas

    The allegations should NOT cost him his chance at the White House.....but.....his lame, ever changing, evasive explaniations WILL

    November 2, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  31. Steve

    Yes it should. 12 years ago, he was fairly old and supposedly matured. It's not like he was in his twenties. First of all I don't understand why he is high in the polls. Here we go again another Obama. People are duped again. Cain has no political experience, was CEO of a Pizza company. How does that qualify him for to be the Commander in Chief, President of the most powerhul Contry in the world? Are the Republicans that stupid or is it me. Does Cain have an Educational Background? If it's going to be Cain vs Obama in 2012 it will be the blind leading the blind. I wonder who will Rev Sharpton and Rev Jackson support?? We should bring Sarah Palin back on the trail. Jack, you haven't brought up Palin's name lately. She was more fun to listen to and an easy mark for the Press to attack. What happenned? Did the fun run out??

    November 2, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  32. Tom (Atlanta)

    In this information age, I swear even Mickey Mouse could not get elected without having to defend his Steam Boat Willy" days. Sorry, I'll take that back we do elect George Bush and Jimmy Carter, didn't we. Regardless, if he quickly clear the air and put it all out there for "the people" to see, if he is clean, he has plenty of time to move on. If he is dirty, he's not the guy for the job. Just a minute. We elected Bill Clinyon didn't we? I guess he'll be ok in any event.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  33. Bill of New Mexico

    This is a tragedy. Cain was the first warm candidate in a long time!

    On Monday, Cain had story # 1!
    On Tuesday, Cain had story # 2!
    On Wednesday, Cain had story # 3!

    Who does not know what that means?

    News Media have their higher standards.

    But, the two women will tell the true stories sooner if not later.

    It is over for Cain!

    Save us the torture of having to see Cain go through his torture.

    We should have higher standards for our politicians–without them lying.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
  34. Frances

    The tea party Republicans were never in the end going to choose Cain as their candidate. They have several other strange people to choose from. Cain's knowledge of the world is non-existent, and his "999 plan" is a joke. Even the company he ran, Godfather's Pizza, served up terrible pizza.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  35. RickFromDetroit

    In this country sex is a more serious crime than murder and it will probably haunt Cain for a long time.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  36. Dana Clark- Livingston Mt.

    It should not cost him his campaign. I have seen this before in the workplace; women blowing things way out of proportion and getting a settlement for nothing. These women probably got a settlement in order for the company to avoid excessive court costs to defend. The fact that a settlement was paid is not admission of guilt, more likely a reflection of our broken and out of control legal system. They also signed a nondisclosure statement. A deal is a deal. If there was gross negligence there would have been a court case and much larger settlement. I am a women and am often embarrassed by the behavior of other women in regards to what they try to get away with, with men. I also think it is way to early for the media to be making a big deal about this when they don't even have all the facts.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  37. Dan

    Dear Jack,

    There are oh, so many really important reasons why H. Cain shouldn't be president and to fuss about this one strikes me as silly. If he did it, he's bad. Certainly. If he didn't he's still bad for all kinds of other reasons. Look into his financing, look into his programs. look into his ability to understand complicated world issues. There you will find much more compelling reasons to reject his candidacy.

    Dan NY

    November 2, 2011 at 2:39 pm |
  38. Ed from California

    First.....Herman Munster doesn't stand a chance in hell of winning. Obama is in. Besides Jack, it's all up to the voters on Nov 2012. Those results will be the tail of the tape. At this point in time, who knows how they will vote.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
  39. Jim Rubner

    I writing from Crawfordsville, Indiana. Since we have not heard all of the story yet I think it is premature to even comment on Mr. Cain's chances. However, his constant memory recalls are not helping him.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
  40. Shearer

    I doubt it. I do however believe the report should be made public. Remove the names of the ladies if necessary. Mr Cain claims the allegations are false and unfounded. Let us read the report and make our own judgement call.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  41. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    No is shouldn't change things for his campaign but if this is the way he would handle a major crisis then people better think long and hard before they vote for him. The truth would set him free and I'm positive that he can't handle the truth. He has the typical pat Washington answer; "I have no recollection". I say nonsense, he's lying just like slick Willy.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  42. John from Alabama

    Jack: No, it should not mess up Herman Cain's candidacy, but his handling of this hot issue will not make him the golden boy of the Tea Party or the conservative Republicans. Herman can not clean up this mess which is about to put him out of the race. It might be a high-tech hannging, but Herman Cain tied the noose around his neck with his explanations.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
  43. Jk from Minnesota

    If Mr Cain wants the voters to trust him, he'd better come clean with all of this before it's uncovered. To me there's a big difference in what Pres Clinton was accused of and What Mr Cain is. Harrassment is far worse an offense in my opinion than an affair. I personally do not think we should have a President that has a past history of harrassment accusations. It would leave him vulnerable to accusation in the future.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:52 pm |
  44. Harry Wortz

    Yes. It's telling as to how his mind works.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  45. Clephas from Austin, TX

    It probably would be best if they did... Cain is a walking, talking disaster. Even considering him being elected to the presidency makes me want to vomit at the potential for collapse.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  46. Ken Victoria BC

    While the situation maybe 12 years ago, nevertheless his lack of memory for the facts is hard to understand. If accused of such a situation, would not an individual remember the circumstances for the rest of their life. This is not the character for a President.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
  47. Dave, Orlando, FL

    Personally I could care less about a politician’s personal life. But let’s be fair. The Republicans threw the entire weight of Congress and the US government at Clinton in a failed attempt to bring him down and get him out of office. Technically, it was over nothing more than lying under oath about something that was personal family business. The key factor with Cain is his inability to deal with the issue honestly and consistently. And that is what I look at; he didn’t handle it well and keeps changing his story a la Weiner. I don't want a president who can't answer a question at least consistently.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
  48. David from Herndon, VA

    If he did it, then yes. This sounds a lot like Wiener's response - several days of bumbling, followed by an admission.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  49. Jim, Cranford NJ

    It does seem disingenuous for the plantiff(s) to take a second bite of the apple after accepting a settlement and signing a confidentiality agreement twelve years ago? I wonder if they are being paid or offered payment for their story. Regardless, there is no sense in trying to diffuse a bomb that has already gone off. Herman Cain needs to respond defnitively and release every record he has related to this allegation.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  50. Annie, Atlanta

    Yes. Plus thinking China doesn't have nukes. Plus illegal campaign start up money. Plus that whole Americans for Prosperity connection. Don't the Kochs own enough politicians, along with ALEC, who all write the laws to benefit them? Plus that whole thing about it being your fault if you're unemployed. Nothing like a guy who has disdain for tens of millions of Americans yet wants to be their President. It would be funny if it wasn't so callous, and he wasn't such an idiot.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  51. Eric in Houston

    Our political process is the worst there is except compared with all of the others. As silly as we sometimes are, the American people have the right to individually choose what issues are important and what they individually think is a disqualification. While I would not disqualify him on what I have heard thus far, our system does provide opportunities for our candidates to show how they perform under pressure, however artificial, and to demonstrate their integrity, such as by leaking such stories in the first place. This information is useful in picking a president.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:01 pm |

    Black lady fron Va says- had he kept his mouth shut I would say it does not matter. however, he has proven he is a liar.
    Republicans always claim the high moral christian road, until they fall off their perch. He is a joke, a bully, and an embarresment to hard working civil rights era champions .

    November 2, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
  53. Steve, Clifton, VA


    12 Years, 6 Years,3 years...What difference does it make if he is in fact guilty ? What I would like to know is did he in fact do it or was some female hired to bring him down or slow his campaign down.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  54. bud rupert

    If he lies or tries to manipulate the facts about the incident then absolutly he should be dismissed. I think this guy, although successful and smart (in some respects) has basically gotten by on charm and cliche ridden speeches. It' starting to show big time. It's mostly flash with no depth whatsoever.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
  55. Dan from Stewartstown PA

    If the allegations prove to be true, they should definitely derail the "Cain Train". As we found out during the Clinton Presidency -including his Impeachment- Americans think our President (even the "Cain Train") is entitled to only one caboose.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
  56. Paulette in Dallas

    I did not like the sly look he had on his face or the smirk when caught on camera. Our country does not need a skirt chaser in office at this dire time. Release the one woman who wants to talk from her "silence agreement." Yesterday all over the media Cain replied when asked what he would say to these women he replied,"I'd ask them WHY they are bringing this up now?" Not" What did I ever do to you to have you make these accuasactions about me?" This alone implies guilt.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
  57. Ray in Knoxville

    No, Jack, he's pretty much doing that all by himself every time he opens his mouth.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  58. Hongli (Tor)

    Jack, I say YES. Thers are two complaints against Mr.Cain and THREE AGENTS tracking him closely-- TIME,GUILT and SHAME. He"s a "GONNER".

    November 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  59. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    I think it all depends on what happened. I think the truth needs to be heard and the republican voters need to decide in the primaries. When I was growing up people and the news media didn't seem to care or concerned about a candidate's private life. If they did Kennedy and Eisenhower might not have been elected. Cain needs to get out in front of this and get everything out in the open. The more this drags on the more it will hurt him.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  60. Paul From Austin Texas

    It all depends on what the actual charge was and if he is at fault of sexual harassment against any employee. The big problem is sexual Harssment can be as mild as a statement of your hair looks real nice today or what a pretty dress or even a pat on the back. This goes for statement or even a touch on the shoulder to either a female or male at work. But look this is 12 years ago and only if he made a lude or gross act towards anyone then it will hurt him in the race for President. I would not be surprized if we find out one of his fellow republicans running for President started this whole thing we will all be suprized on who started it all.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  61. Steve

    No but not being able to "spin" it correctly does. How else does he expect to be a good President and explain unjustified wars, tax cuts, unpaid for Medicare drug plans and to be fair, affairs with interns, etc. etc?


    November 2, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  62. jimmy in greenville nc

    Heck no. Look what sex did for Bill Clinton and Teddy Kennedy. Bill is still a popular guy even after the Monica affair. And when Teddy died he was proclaimed the "Lion of the Senate." I can't see where the sex stuff will hurt Cain. I'm even waiting for John Edwards to storm back on the scene. With all the bad news coming out of Washington the sex charges are a welcome relief.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  63. Gail, Plano TX.

    Jack: He never had a chance before this sexual harassment charge surfaced of becoming the Republican candidate for President! He is a joke. And a liar. He is done! But not to worry, Fox will give him his own TV show, which is the reason he ran in the first place!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  64. Meredith in Seattle

    Of course not, Jack. What should end his run is his blatant lack of political experience and inability to clearly communicate his beliefs, policies, and plans for the country. If I was on his team I would be shaking in my boots every time he gets in front of a microphone. Looks like I'll be voting for Mitt in 2012.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  65. Bob from Bellmore, New York

    The allegation by itself should not ruin his candidacy, but how he handles it gives us some insight into his ability to handle pressure and deal with unforseen developments. If he can’t effectively navigate through something like this, then how can he possibly handle the pressure of being President.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
  66. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: I don't think it should---It didn't ruin Bill Clilnton's Presidency---may have been better accepted after the fact-–that's if Cain would win the nomination and Presidency

    November 2, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
  67. Mitoosense Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    With the exception of David Letterman these accusations are followed by weeks of denials. The Anthony Weiner syndrom that invites the public to join in their personal denials. The public hasn't any interest in the womans scorned or the legendary influnce money and power has over females. The interest we follow is "will he tell the truth" or the Bill Clinton syndrom. Most will lie first and wait for the truth to rear it's Ugly Head. So far Cain has followed with Weiner and Clinton. Changing stories and selective memory. If he lies, put a fork in him cuze he's done..

    November 2, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  68. Doug Ericson

    Cain has been his own worst enemy since the news of the accusations came out. One denial becomes two denials which requires four more denials and so forth. As an experienced flea market picker, I know, that when I see a flicker of something interesting in a pile of rubble, that there may be something more under it. Piles of rubble can't hide your trouble, poor Herm we were just getting to like you. Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  69. Kim , Dodge City, Kansas

    It would ruin most people's lives, because sexual harassment laws apply to everyone, supposedly. I guess if you have enough money, and a good lawyer, then you can just play dumb and go about your business like nothing happened. !2 years ago, or 12 days ago, if it happened it happened. Hopefully we will soon see the end of Mr. Cain on our nightly sound bites.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  70. bonnie from NJ

    I do not know the details of these allegations so it is hard to say. But if these women were paid off, I would have to say the allegations had something to them. So, you're saying Jack that since these acts are 12 years old, they should be discounted, really Jack? What the heck we already have one pig on the Supreme Court, why not president?

    November 2, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  71. Joe Ft Walton Bch Fl

    Herman Cain was ahead in the poll, so someone decided to spoil it for him and come out with an incident that happened years ago. The two women, one of them got paid 35.000 dollars and the other one either will speak and tell her side of the story if allowed or get paid. If we going to go around and investigate every Congressman and Senator for misbehaving we wont have any left to operate the government. Let the voters decide at election time if Mr. Cain when or if becomes the Republican nominee if he is qualify to become President according to his experience and knowledge.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:49 pm |

    If he cannot face his victims, and by his own word he hasn't, then yes . Who knows what else will come to light.

    He has already lied way to much..

    Why don't you get a body language expert to evaluate him on air. He only lickes his lips and outh when lying.
    Check him out, than let him go.
    We do not know how many there were, if they are white or black, young or old.
    The only thing we do know is that a small sum paid to a low income person ,again, was bought off by a a rich man .
    If a poor man did what he is accused of, that person would still be in jail.
    METAKWORKER in Illinois

    November 2, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  73. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    Like they say, it's not the scandal but the poorly handled disjointed denial. How stupid is it to deny a scandal with a paper trail which will include the cancelled checks of the hush money? At least this is distracting from the alleged felony violation of campaign finance law. A sex scandal is much more salacious than an obscure violation of our few remaining campaign finance laws! (Why didn't he just funnel the money through a legal super PAC?)

    November 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  74. Ken Ridge

    Allegations alone shouldn't cost Herman Cain his chance to occupy the White House, but the facts should be made public. Whether you call it a "settlement" or "agreement," hiding behind a contract where money was paid to keep the facts secret could do seriousl damage to Cain's characterization of himself as a "straight shooter."

    Ken – Des Moines

    November 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  75. AB

    If the sexual harassment allegations made against Cain prove to be true then his campaign should end. If they are not, Cain should have no trouble running for the 2012 GOP nonimation for President. Cain has handled this matter inartfully and stupidly. Cain claimed that he was not aware of a settlement of this matter did not make sense. I think he lied. My suspicion was confirmed as he later acknowledged that he was aware of a settlement agreement and blamed his confusion on semantics. I believed Cain knew that the words settlement and agreement mean the same thing. He simply lied about the matter. Cain has shown that he is unfit for the Presidency and should quit the race.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  76. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    I will say this, like I said it during President Clinton's White House tenure...if it doesn't affect his campaign, or how he runs the country, or national security...LEAVE IT ALONE. It really angers me how many people like to discredit someone based on some closed-door doings-on. Maybe they should go back to church and reread that passage that states 'Let he who is without sin cast the first stone'.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  77. karma

    After what the Republicans did to Bill Clinton for 8 years, YES, Cain is definitely fair game on this!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  78. Larry in Houston

    Should allegations of sexual harassment more than 12 years ago cost Herman Cain his run for the White House?

    NO ! It won't make any difference a Year from Now. Most people will either forget about this incident, or there will be something Much, Much Bigger to be paying attention to. Or shall I say, other political things will be more important.

    Jack – Just wait til next October – That's when the 18 to 28 year olds will really Pay attention to the Election, unless they are political Junkies. When the October Debates takes place – You will see & hear questions like : "How many Houses do you Own" ? or "How many Cars do you Own" ? (remember when they asked McCain that Question ) and the list goes ON, such as how much rental property does the Candidate has, and what type of Cars do you Own, or how many BMW's or Rolls Royce's Do They Own. It will get downright Nasty, come next October, at THOSE Debates.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  79. ruleoflaw

    Hate to break it to you, but Clinton was impeached..he was not removed from office, however.

    Herman has a problem here though, and has not handled the situation well. If there is nothing to the allegations, he could press for the women to speak freely. But if they spin a tale, it will be he-said she-said. There may be no way to come out well on this for Cain...

    November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  80. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    As in most of these issues it is not a mistake that happened years ago, rather it is the denial and lies that these people do today that should bring to question their character.

    I believe in forgiveness and redemption as we all face temptations through the course of our lives, but making mistake after knowing the errors of your ways tells us of the fault that lays in the person.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  81. Jenny from Nanuet, New York

    Like you said-he handled this situation clumsily. But the fact that he also handled his position on abortion and the "electrified fence' clumsily, not to mention he lacks any knowledge about foreign policy, all of that combined should cost him his run for the presidency. He's unqualified. Period. End of story.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  82. Simon/Orlando

    I don't know, but someone should ask the expert....Bill Clinton.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
  83. Dan in Albuquerque

    It depends on the facts from the restaurant association and the woman's side of the story. It's clear that a one-year payment was more than a severance pay. More likely to get him is the illegal campaign donations from a non-profit front for big money donations from rich Republicans.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
  84. Brian in IL

    We don't yet know if the allegations are true. But weren't similar allegations made against Bill Clinton, and it didn't stop him from winning the Presidency. And let's not forget the granddaddy of them all, the allegations Anita Hill made against Clarence Thomas, and they didn't prevent him from a Supreme Court seat. That actually was what started the whole harassment hysteria. Which it turned out to have created a monster. While controls against such behavior were needed, the unfortunate byproduct has been that it can also be used as a lynching tool against someone that one may have a grudge against. This happens in workplaces all the time. And while nobody, male or female, black or white, straight or gay, needed to put up with said harassment, it has been taken so far that men are so often afraid to give a woman a compliment such as "I like your sweater" for fear that it would be treated as harassment. And while the idea is to create a hostile workplace environment, if one has to go to work nearly wearing handcuffs, a blindfold and a muzzle because you have to be so afraid as to what you are going to say and where your eyes and hands may go, shouldn't that be considered hostile as well? I rightly believe that it should and there needs to be a middle ground. That is why I often feel unions need to regain some strength albeit probably not to the level they had before. On the Cain saga, if the idea that he may have engaged in some questionable behavior disturbs you, then don't vote for him.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
  85. Mike in Minneapolis

    No. His lack of any political experience at all should cost him his run for the White House.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  86. CNNuthin

    Everything else Cain has said and done should be enough to ruin his candidacy. This just adds to a growing list of why he should not lead. And my opinion is less based on the accusations, and more on how he is handling the situation. He cannot handle the press, he cannot handle politics, he cannot handle his own campaign staff.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  87. John

    The media maketh and the media taketh away. Politics is an acidic game, as soon as you become popular all bets are off, the rats come out of the woodwork as do the agents and managers looking to sign new clients, create book deals and talk shows based on supposed allegations. Public office is an unforgiving endeavour to say the least.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  88. Jeff in San Diego

    The fact that he didn't see this coming as the front runner for the GOP, proves he is unfit for POTUS. How can anyone not know this would come out. He wrote TWO women checks for tens of thousands of dollars. Women who are college educated professionals that work in Washington. It's not like he played grab ass on some waitress, he harassed Ivy Leaguers. Cain's an idiot whose idea to make the American dream affordable is to raise taxes on the poor while lowering taxes on the rich. Now he's a pervert, too. Next please.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  89. Betty MN

    No what disquailifies him is not knowing that China has had Nuclear weapons for almost 50 years. For trying to pass off his 9-9-9 plan as any thing more than a plan to screw the middle class and give himself and his rich cronies a huge tax break. And for playing the race card when he wants to get out of answering legitimate questions.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  90. Texaslib

    He paid out a cash settlement because he sexually harassed a subordinate. Anyone who criticized Bill Clinton had better stand in line with the same fervor over Herman Cain.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  91. elvis costanza

    Jack, the charge is no longer the issue due, to Cain's bleeding out more and more spin every day. The issue now is his dodging and weaving and inability to stand the heat of legitimate questions.
    He has already broken the NDA and I think the women should also be able to tell their side of now. He has slandered their job performance.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  92. Sasha

    In answer to your question: No. What should scuttle Cain's campaign is the fact that he's demonstrably ignorant of the issues and utterly unqualified.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  93. Denis In Pleasant Hill Ca

    My understanding is that the Cain campaign had information that this story was going to be released for at least a week. Mr. Cains responses on Monday clearly indicate that either his campaign didn't tell him, or, was completely inept at preparing him to respond, or, they knew this story was going to kill him and they might as well make it look like he was blindsided. This story is not going to go away and the original documents will probably be "leaked" at some point. Mr. Cain is toast.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  94. Brian Wickremasinghe - Woodland Hills

    Democrats may not mind it. His GOP opponents might have another view.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  95. G, Denver

    The charge itself? no. The inability to truthfully answer questions about the charge, or give an adequate explanation for it? Probably. And that's a shame, because Cain getting the nomination would likely have guaranteed an Obama victory next year.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  96. us1776

    We need to stop paying any attention to these sex things. They have no bearing upon whether a candidate is capable of leadership of a government.

    It was ridiculous when the GOP did this to Clinton and its ridiculous now with Cain. And all this sex allegation nonsense needs to stop. It is nothing more than a distraction from real issues.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  97. John from California

    Jack, if the media has its choice then yes.

    What happened to the old fashion news man Jack? The one who had a real story and something of substance to talk about? Now all we have is a bunch of whiny tabloid story chasers who repeat the same 3 stories over and over again. That is what we have here, a tabloid story. Wake me up when you guys actually report on something of substance again.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  98. Mike, Longview TX

    I guess you could either vote for Cain and his accusals of harrassment or Obama and his harrassment of those that do so they can provide for those who don't.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  99. Adam

    Who cares about a 12 year old allegation. I think his record should speak for itself, and there isn't much there. 9,9,9 just doesn't cut it. We have serious issues to deal with and I am baffled by the current Republican line up. As an Independent I was really hopping for a plausible alternative. It certainly is not Herman Cain! You can't get ruffled like that in front of the Media. It shows a real lack of control, very unpresidential. If he just kept quiet and laughed it off, the reporter in his face comes off as being overbearing, but because he popped off like that, it only opens him up to criticism. But the short answer is No it should not ruin his candidacy, how he deals with the issue will speak to his character, and that is the platform he should be judged on.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  100. Paul from NYC

    Jack - whether or not the sexual activity is consensual is the most fundamental question here.

    Bill Clinton has nothing to do with this.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  101. Lynda K

    Absolutely not. I would never vote for Cain but I firmly believe that, while the behavior may be considered sleazy, sexual indescretions do not prevent anyone from performing their job well, whether they are a president or pizza maker.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  102. Jon from Tempe

    I would say that at this point we do not know enough details about the two sexual harrassment cases to know if it should harm Cain. If we find out that the cases are both bogus, they it should not. If we find that there are some serious allegations in the cases, then by all means yes. We will find out more when the victims finally are allowed to go public. The idea that the liberal news media is behind this is rediculous. Liberals want Cain to win the nomination as he would be easier to beat than Romney. Liberals would not shoot themselves in the foot like that.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  103. Dr. Edward D. Viner

    The 12 year old sexual harrassment charge says nothing about Mr. Cain's qualifications to be president, and should be ignored.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  104. Pradeep, Cupertino, CA

    I dont think a 12 year old scandal should wreck his bid but his handling of the situation definitely should. If he cannot deal with something on this scale, how can we be certain he has the capabilities to deal with much larger problems – the economy, unemployment etc?


    November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  105. Liane Waselus, Phoenix, AZ

    Probably. But of more concern is his lack of qualifications and judgment, as displayed by the smoking ad. He either didn't know about it (and should have) or knew about it and should have nixed the idea. It seriously makes me worry about what kinds of decisions he would make and who he would surround himself with as advisors.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  106. Walter Shmitt

    No. His lack of qualification for the highest office in the land should eliminate him from contention.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  107. Nick D. Neighbour

    Will it cost him the nomination? We can only HOPE SO!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  108. Austin H.

    I don't think that this issue should ruin Cain's White House run. He has already said that these were false accusations. Even if they were true, it happened 12 years ago...GET OVER IT! Herman Cain will be our next president.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  109. Jenni, Fresno CA

    My answer is a resounding YES........
    Once a pervert, always a pervert!!!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  110. Mike

    Sure it should matter! How many times has anybody on this blog been accused of sexual harrassment and paid out $35,000 which means he is guilty. Why didn't he countersue if he was so innocent. These politicians can really lie throught their teeth and many are pure hypocrites out for their own interests.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  111. dave in nashville

    I am absolutely guilty of the same charge and therefore not qualified to answer your question. I suspect most men and women are equally guilty.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  112. frank dileo

    no i dint think so not without seeing the facts. In this hyper PC society sexual harassment has such a broad meaning and can include just about anything most of which probably is not even actually sexual harassment. Lets see the facts then ask this question again

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  113. Tom Pacileo

    If the two women accepted a settlement it's over. Period. If Cain didn't go to jail over it problem it was because it was a civil matter. Case closed. On with life.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  114. BigToots (Colorado)

    Sexual harassment is a very broad term – it's out there & it is everywhere. If charges of it are not enough to keep someone off the Supreme Court why should it be an obstacle to being a candidate for public office? Just sayin.....

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  115. Jerry D. Smith

    Herman Cain must be innocent with the ferocity CNN and the liberal news media is attempting to discredit him. He has my vote.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  116. Johnny

    The stork that brought Cain's PR man ought to be shot for smuggling dope. One thing about a liar they can sent you to the gallows whereas a thief will only steal from you. America has had lots of President thieves so give the liar a shot.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  117. zb

    No, unless they are true, but if this is and example of the way he handles a national crises that is enough not to mention every other idiotic thing this guy has said, thought on that score he is no worse then the rest of those looney in the Republican/Tparty.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  118. Linda

    I think it should prevent him from being president. His previous disrespect for women is troubling even if he has learned a lesson from it.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  119. Greg

    No, indiscretions from his past should not have any influence but like President Clinton, the trouble comes not from what was done but from the lies and coverups that attempt to clear the candidate.

    The American people do not like being lied to....by anyone but especially by someone who wants to be President of the United States.

    Oak Park, IL

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  120. Bob in Texas

    Certainly NOT! Allegations such as these require the accused to "prove a negative." The burden of proof here lies with the accusers, whoever they may be. If a deal was made, where's the evidence? To be sure, there are lots of issue related reasons to reject Cain's candidacy. Let's stick to those and, until there's hard evidence, leave the tabloid issues alone. When the accusers are willing to identify themselves or the written agreement surfaces, then we can examine the issue. Until then, let's let the accused have the benefit of the doubt and refocus our attention on the matters that matter.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  121. Travis in Houston

    Absolutely! If it's a serious allegation and he did something unethical or wrong, then why would we want him to hold the highest office? Cain's story so far doesn't add up, especially with settlements to two women. If we have a choice between someone that committed sexual harassment only once, twelve years ago, or someone that never did any such thing at all... well that doesn't really make for much of a choice

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  122. Cathey Thomas

    I don't know if the case itself SHOULD cost him the nomination because we don't know much about it. But his incredibly clumsy handling of it, as well as his total refusal to take responsibility for it, SHOULD cost him something.

    But I doubt it'll make much difference because he's a Republican.

    If he were a Democrat, he'd be DONE. But with the Neanderthal mindset of today's Republican base, it'll probably make him a hero.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  123. Mike M. Scappoose, OR

    lying about it should kill his campaign, like he had a chance anyway?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  124. Jennifer M

    Who knows Jack ... there very well may be more women out there who will come forward about more recent harassments.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  125. Gene

    Herman Cain does make the most sense of all the other candidates, but he does not survive this.We are talking not one but two women, trying to take advantage of women just doesn't fly!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  126. Jim Keagler

    If H. Cain has such bad judgement, he can not be our president. We need to know the facts and, yes, it will make a difference years later. Once a rat, always a rat.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  127. Jason Glover-Swilley

    While a Long time viewer of yours I found your statements today unfair and slightly insulting. Until you are black or some group that has been targeted before don't make light of racism and the reality of it in America. You made reference to Cain using racsism to explain the coverage and harassment he's seen since the scandal "broke". Well I'm here to tell you racism is alive and very well I'm retired army SGT. And currently a flight attendant for the largest airline in the world and see racsism Raw and in my face every day. Thank you

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  128. John C from Long Island

    As a GOP Presidential candidate, Herman Cain has ASKED for this close scrutiny! Mr. Cain should address this issue, clearly, without blaming others and then let the voters decide whether they still want to support him. If the claims are baseless, fine, let him explain that. But the FACT that his immediate reaction was lie about the existence of a settlement, then switch to a baseless claim of racism strikes me the same way the actions of a 5 year old caught with their hand in the cookie jar would- They strike me as someone who is trying to lie or deflect their way out of a situation that they are flat out guilty of.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  129. David P Vernon

    It's not the scandal, it's the coverup that counts. Spitzer was convicted of a crime. Edwards actually impregnated an employee out of wedlock. Cain was accused. Was he exonerated, as he says? Was he truthful in explaining the facts? Is he hiding something? Anyone can accuse anyone else of anything, so the accusation itself is not grounds for anything but an investigation. Concealing past wrongdoing while running for office is something else – only if that is what the facts show is the Cain campaign in real trouble about it.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  130. John Brower

    We were blindsided by Bill Clinton but if we elect Cain and this all plays out to be true, we will have no buy ourselves tyo blame because we did it to ourselves. We need to at least start with candidates who we believe have good moral and ethical values. Cain should have known this would have been dug uip because "Big Boy" plolitics is touigh. He was not well prepared to jhaldle this and when he did try, he lied.. Shame on you Herman.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  131. Keech T. LeClair

    Cain and your daughter's kindergarde teacher shoould be held to the same standard!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  132. who cares

    What did he do or say or imply that amounted to harassment of any kind? Until we know that, it may not amount to anything and should NOT affect his run. The people or the organizations that know what those allegations specifically were may continue to stoke the fire but until everyone is told the details of the charges, I don't see why it should affect his run. If anything, it may help him drive up an "anti-media" sentiment.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  133. SAM

    The scandal shouldn't ruin Cain's candidacy alone. But it is mainly how Cain has handled the scandal. Cain is weak with crisis management. Cain should have known that allegations for sexual harassment would be an issue to deal with as a candidate for President. And his obvious inability to answer to the allegations eloquently and tactfully makes him weak on crisis management. If he can't take care of his individual issues how can he be expected to handle the domestic and foreign affairs of the USA.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  134. Matt

    No it shouldn't, There is really one reason this is happening to Cain, he's #1 in the polls, he electric and he has good plans but someone somewhere don't like it and will do whatever even drumming up incidents 12 yrs old to get him out of the race. But really this should not affect his running for office, It didn't hurt Bill Clinton with Jennifer Flowers, It didn't hurt Bush with his drinking, and It didnt' hurt Obama smoking dope in college. Everyone has skeletons in their closet they don't want out and when they do, just got to do what you can to be honest and minimize the damage...

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  135. Fred

    Cain is a pervert to say the least. And yes he has to man up and stand up to the heat. He has been getting a free pass by the media so far.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  136. Zelesky R

    If the nature of this complaint falls under the categoryof the following examples: intimidation, bullying or coercion of a sexual nature, or the unwelcome or inappropriate promise of rewards in exchange for sexual favors, than Herman need's to come clean !

    November 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  137. Phillip

    This is not a question of whether or not he is guilty of sexual harrassment, as that issue was "settled" out of court to the satisfaction of both parties. The issue is that there is ZERO chance that he does not remember the accusations from that chapter of his life. That makes him a liar, and undermines his message of being the "anti-politician". Career politician or not, he poessesses the very characteristics that so many people find repulsive. He has no place in the Whitehouse.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  138. Glenn, Hawthorne NV

    Yes, Read my lips "No more Perverts"

    November 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  139. Dave Sielaff

    "And the truth shall set you free"! Not changed stories – Anthony Wiener showed that – let the women speak W/O penalty!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  140. Thomas

    His sexual drive was probably a lot stronger 12 years ago, and I am guessing one does not have to worry about that anymore. I am more worried this guy is surging up the polls with no experience like a teenagers first sexual experience!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  141. Jake

    my initial response is no. but with conservatives you have to take a look at where they stand on social issues and how they discriminate against people who think or believe differently from them...and in these instances you kind of have to take a second look at their "strict moral code" and unfortunately they put themselves up to be torn down. so in these terms, yes. this should ruin his candidacy.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  142. William Karish

    I don't know if it will hurt him yet but the idea that this is a high tech lynching is ludicrous. I can't believe no one has tied
    Gov. Perry's bizarre behaviour aound the time this was about to or did come up. Maybe he was drunk with power as he
    saw the gift laid at his feet. Either way Herman needs to Man up because the truth is going to come out and he should be the one laying out his case. Someone ought to tell him the Chineese already have nukes as he needs to watch everything he says from this time forward.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  143. Rich in Gainesville FL

    Past incidents have pretty well proven that voters are usually ready to forgive this kind of misbehavior. After all, lots of us make mistakes. What's sometimes an issue with voters is whether or not you admit it or do your best to evade, avoid and make excuses. So far, Mr Cain is either innocent or is handling this all wrong.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  144. Brian in Georgia

    Let's keep in mind that sexual harassment can be a calendar on the wall showing woman in swimsuits.

    Even if the her story comes out , it will be he said she said and nothing will change. What are her real motives to bring all this up 12 years later. Simple......MONEY !!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  145. PiedType

    Should the allegations ruin his chances? It depends on what actually happened, not just on the existence of allegations. Sooner or later, one way or another, someone will talk and we WILL learn the details. I suggest to Mr. Cain that those details come from him, now. The voters will decide whether to disqualify him.


    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  146. Dee in New Paris OHIO

    First, I need to know if the allegations are true or not. I find it INCREDIBLE that so many Republicans seem to be so wrapped up in sexual scandals.

    Then to your question., Yes, it should, if found to be true, definitely have severe repercussions to Cain's campaign.

    But not because of the sex part (although I still can barely believe it, most Republicans seem to be so full or 'values') It should have repercussions because if Cain LIED about even being accused, and then if the women were in fact paid off to stop them from speaking out, those actions seem to be NOTHING I want in my president! Once a liar, always a liar. And if tre, I wonder if such actions are not criminal!

    And not to appear to be targeting Republicans, I thought at the time, and still do, that Clinton was lying about the Lewinsky incudent!

    As you said, this stuff is probably going on all over Congress. If YOU know about it, why don't YOU blow the whistle? Do you condone such actions?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  147. James Perigo

    In no way should allegations of sexual harrassment defeat Mr. Cain's opportunity to run for president. Withour facts on these allegations they remain circumstantial. Conviently these allegations surface at a time when Mr. Cain is leading the polls for a nomination. At this point for me these allegations seem politically motivated in a effort to smear a successful campaign. I have not decided as to what candidates I truly support. Citizens in this country are smart enough to read between the lines and this seems very typical!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  148. kanwarjit sidhu

    No,only real tpics should matter.He seems to be very capable man and could be great president if elected..It was settled then and is good for me.No more discussion.


    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  149. Peggy

    NO ! If we base out actions on a man that might have or even did make a pass at a woman, We truly would be in trouble. I don't know of a MAN alive that has not in some way made a pass verbally or physically to a woman. Stick to the issues of what he can do for America.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  150. NurseWrenBSN

    I think it's more about him not being honest in his responses, and this regarding most every important issue that he is asked about. Wow, they say Mitt Romney flip-flops..Herman Cain just can't stop doing it! Even more frightening though is this mans knowledge and ideas about foreign policy. He doesn't know China already had nuclear capabilities & he'd be ready to go to war with Iran. LORD, please don't let this man get in the White House. I'd take any other Republican candidate over him...and this had NOTHING to with race.... I'd vote for Condi Rice in a heart beat!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  151. blake

    Accusations mean nothing. If it proves to be true, that is another matter. Character is absolutely core to leadership. The way the media has responded to proven indiscretions by darlings like John Kennedy, MLK, and Bill Clinton are inexcusable. It clearly reflects very negatively on one's leadership.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  152. Clifford from NC

    It should, because it speaks to one's character and integrety.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  153. Neil

    That depends on whether or not he is guilty, I thought we lived in a society where someone was innocent until proven guilty. What will sink his run for president is his policies, and his choice of words. I'm sure 84% of Americans don't want to pay more for everyday living expenses, as well as have a fence that could kill people, or even promote smoking in a campaign ad. At this rate those aren't his last blunders, hopefully we can all wake up, do some research, and find out who really wants to help the vast majoirty of Americans.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  154. Jim Frei

    These allegations should not ruin Cain's candidacy. The fact that he is a nut job should ruin his candidacy.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  155. Bubba, ATL

    The accusations aren't "accusations" but facts, since they are history and he had to pay them settlement money. Stuff like that happens in business; what concerns America is the way he's going "I remember nothing. It never happened. OK, it happened, but I wasn't there. Wait, I was there, it happened, but it just be Herman bein' Herman. Oh, I remember some more stuff now." Come on, he sounds like he's trying to lie his way out of it. We had enough of that with Cheney and Clinton.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  156. Ian

    The complainant who wants to speak out "believes Cain is lying" she doesn't know?


    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  157. rich from Texas

    Jack, Cain is not presidential material in the first place, and yes, sexual harassment is a serious charge. The people of this country are getting really strange when they will accept anyone to be president, no matter what is in their past. Obama will win the next election, basically because all of his economic policy's that are in place right now were put there by President Bush, Obama has not been able to change one thing with the do nothing Congress. The rich keep getting richer while the middle class and poor keep getting poorer, just how the Republicans want it, they will never do anything to change that.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  158. Marine57

    "Should 12-year-old sexual harassment charge ruin Cain’s candidacy?" YES, it SHOULD, but no man is perfect – not even news reporters who search out these sins.
    This kind of perverted behavior SHOULD HAVE hurt Bill Clinton's candidacy, but it DID NOT.
    In spite of Clinton's lies and evasiveness and continued perverted behavior in office, stupid people still voted Clinton into office for a second term when he SHOULD HAVE BEEN impeached during his first term. Bill Clinton was such an embarrassment to America.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  159. Brenda

    He must of done something,because he sure has tried to make this a non issue with his poor memory. I do think it will effect his candidacy and if it doesn't it should. If not this his foreign affairs lack of knowledge will bring him down. This man is not fit to be president. period.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  160. Angela University place washington

    Why is Herman Cain raising so much Cain? He wanted attention now he has it and no one is the blame but himself, he claimed race was never a factor in his success or failure, but now he is claiming slander high tech lynching... now because he is black... who is playing the race card now... he chose to run for office and he requested media attention, and he asked the public to trust him, now he needs to own up to the .truth, because he knows the real answer...

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  161. Christi in Texas

    No, it should not effect his bid. However, lying about it and changing his story several times should. The last thing this country needs is another president that cannot own their side of the street and admit to his wrong doings. We all make mistakes, it's being able to admit those mistakes and learn from them that builds character, makes us better people and earns respect. I will never respect someone who lies and attempts a cover up.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  162. Ann in Minnesota

    Cain should get off the stage NOW. AP just reported that a 3rd woman has come forward. She didn't file a complaint to get a settlement and therefore can speak. In her case, Cain had a bad habit of discussing the appearance of women in the office with other men in the office and inviting them to his "corporate apartment" that the NRA provided him. Big Ego + Love Pad = Don't Bother To Run For President. This is besides the fact that they also have a campaign financing violation already and his smoking campaign chief of staff was previously kicked out of conducting political campaigns in Wisconsin 10 years ago for – you guessed it – comitting the same type of campaign financing violations.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  163. David in Vegas

    I was a big Cain supporter and happy we had a plain talking hands on candidate. That all vanished over the last three days as Mr. Cain fell apart and showed he is just like the other Washington clowns. The different stories over the last 3 days and his lack of self control show he is not ready for the White House.. It's so sad, as I was really excited about getting back into politics and believing we had a chance to turn America around to the good.... Guess, I will just vote for Romney and settle for the best of the rest.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  164. Mike Geisler, Ponte Vedra Beach, fl

    I don't necessarily think so, but lying about it to the people that you want to represent should disqualify you immediately.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  165. Safeer

    As humans we all make mistakes. Mistakes do matter but a lot of times what really matters is how we behave after making a mistake. Herman at first denies it and when pushed hard starts making up stories like a lier caught in act. Presidental candidates should be held to a high moral standard and I dont think Herman meets this standard.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  166. Roland - Conyers, GA

    No the 12 years old case should not ruin Cain's campaign. However his lies and attempts at smearing his victims shows something about his character and should disualify him as a candidate. His supporters need to know to know that the race card DOES NOT apply in this case and should not be brought up. It is all about character.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  167. leo

    No i beleve Mr cain is another politician beig exposed for some wrongdoing because of his gop polls are high.
    However he who is without a sin cas the first stone.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  168. Larry

    If he felt that something like this would not come out by the media he is not living in the same world as you and I. The responces that have been given thus far will make the media dig further for the real truth. if it exsist. I am more disapointed in the angry responce he had to the reporters. Do I want someone that short tempered over questions the people need to know have the potential of having his finger on the trigger of mankind. I think not.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  169. Bill in Penna

    He has a golden opportunity let the alleged victim tell her story. If he continues to hide the truth he could well be a sex offender and that for the average citizen leads to a long long prison term as a felon.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  170. Jered

    I am and have been a Cain supporter.. No he should not be judged on his ability to be President based on harrasment allegations from twelve years ago, but I will be closely watching how he hanles this issue in his campaign and it hasnt been handled very well up until now. He has went out on a limb to discuss the allegations with varioius media sources but has clearly been uncomfortable in every interview.. I think it only gets worse from here concerning his campaign, but I hope Im wrong

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  171. Paul-Maine

    No, People don't pay any attention to the media or political elites after what they did to Palin.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  172. Mike Wishnowski

    He should not be disqualified from running because of the incident (as we know it) but the perfunctory manner in which he has handled it should give people pause. He went from zero recall to fluctuating recall in like 6 seconds. He started with an outright denial and since has shown various levels of acceptance. He even claimed this was some sort of left wing smear (a special Larry Craig highly recommends available in the Minneapolis airport restrooms) though I don`t imagine his campaign had any Democrats quaking. I think the media has missed something. Herman Cain said he would defeat those out to destroy him. I take this as a suicide threat. He is his own worst enemy and maybe he should start looking towards the next season of America`s Got Talent and give that singing thing a shot.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  173. Vince Ryan

    He is in this playground called politics, so yes. It would be ridiculous to think this would not come up on Cain. The Republicans went after Clinton with $90 million and it was okay, but then again we had a financial surplus. The Republicans need to get a dose of reality.
    My Gosh

    Davenport, Iowa

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  174. Bill - Peoria

    Let's refocus the press on "facts" related to important issues facing this country and not on long ago resolved he said, she said issues of social faux paux and misinterpretations they think they can fill time with by blowing them up far beyond their importance. I haven't decided who to vote for but I am tired of this meaningless trite instead of digging in to how the candidates will resolve nthe real issues.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  175. Bill - Dallas

    In this case there is definitely fire amongst all the smoke. He's toast!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  176. Linda in Arizona

    If the allegations turn out to be credible, it might set him back. As for whether it "should" cost him the nomination, there are other, much more relevant things that should do that, such as his lack of any foreign policy knowledge. Not to know that China has had nuclear capability for decades is pathetic and unforgivable. Also, people might not like the way he's frantically playing the race card. This isn't about race. In addition, the left is not behind this revelation. They would have waited to use it until he became the nominee. This came from the republicans. They're all capable of it, but it reeks of rove to me.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  177. Sandstone.

    "Would. Could. Should? Well it could, but words are for the birds; so sticks and stones are for the people to use. As for me, I think it will hurt him quite badly as the weeks go by !"

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  178. Bob T - Southfield, MI

    I prefer to withhold judgement until I hear the victim's account of why they received a sexual harrassment settlement from the National Restaurant Association (NRA). Now remember that the NRA is a business lobbyist organization, that Herman Cain is the current favorite of the Tea Party which was founded and funded by Charles and David Koch, that if the NRA ever expects to have any further lobbyist influence in Washington, then the NRA had better not let the victims tell their story. If the NRA refuses to let the victims tell their side then I think that ought to destroy Herman Cain's campaign for the presidency.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  179. mouse

    yes but only if he is found guilty of criminal offenses, in which case like any other sex offender he should do jail time.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  180. Hayk

    Did I miss something?! What happened to the idea of innocent until proven guilty?! Has the media decided they can act as the judge, jury and the executioner? Has a court date been set? Just because there are claims does not mean there is wrong doing. Nor should political pendants in media be allowed to seat in judgment.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  181. Don in Nashville

    Lord no, every President since Kennedy (except Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford) checked out the chicks around the White House. If Cain wants to run for President and not Pope, let him do his thing.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  182. Rus in St. Paul, MN

    It doesn't change my opinion at all as a Cain supporter, because there has been very little information to base changing my opinion on. What happened? An inappropriate joke? An overheard conversation? A quid-pro-quo arrangement? The definition of sexual harassment is quite broad, and without knowing what the actual accusations are, it's irresponsible to jump to any conclusion. For anyone to say this should end Mr. Cain's candidacy is premature, and I'm sure most Republicans saying that are also supporting Mitt Romney.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  183. tom angelopoulos

    What should make Cain go away is the fact that he was not aware that China has had nuclear weapons for the last 50 years. Sexual harassment can be argued, is all in the perception of each party involved. It is his rediculous claims of not rememebering the facts or that there was a settlement that should end his presidential run, if his ignorance does not.

    Montreal Quebec (Canada, for all you geographically challenged Americans)

    November 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  184. Nita, Acworth, GA

    It should. And it is his own fault! If Cain's own rationale were to apply to this situation, this issue is his own fault. A ruined candidacy is his own fault. As he has said to folks without a job, "It's your own fault." Nobody is to blame but him self.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  185. dy from wisconsin

    No living person could be less interested in Cain's salacious imaginings than I, but I am interested to know whether he is the type of person to abuse a position of power, engage in a cover-up (in the form of a settlement), then violate the terms of that settlement. Americans deserve a smarter leader than that.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  186. bill

    It may welll be that the racism toward Herman Cain is actually from the Tea Party.
    I believe that the Tea Party abhors the idea of a black president, either Republican or Democrat.
    They may well be behind the revelation of sexual harassment against Cain.
    Bill in Michigan

    November 2, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  187. Lisa fronm Long Island

    Who knows what actually happened all those yrs ago, but what keeps worrying me is what Cain is doing NOW. WOMEN in today's workplace KNOW they take a BIG chance if they go to HR with a complaint. Contrary to what you would hope if you are having a problem, HR has no interest in being independent. They are paid by the bosses whose behavior is in question. The USUAL remedy to a complaint is for HR to start the process of documenting your performance so they can just fire you. Thats what REALLY happens. Then it is all covered up by a non-disclosure agt. The person who at the beginning just wanted some help ends up being grateful to get out of the situation without being financially damaged. When I hear CAIN say his attorney and the HR person (who both answer to CAIN) determined that not only did the accuser not have a legitimate claim? that her performace was SUBpar? I knew exactly what was going on and its sickening.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  188. Name*paul dunham

    No not the allegation.........just Cain's constant flip-flopping on this issue as well as every other issue he has addressed. He not only has his foot in his mouth he must be up to his knee by now!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  189. aelarsen

    politics is the ultimate dirty game.... people that subject themselves to this scrutiny need to remember that politics is a blood sport .....this is also why we have such a collection of idiots roaming the halls of congress.....the win at all costs mantra of democrats and republicans assures that nothing will ever be fixed....nothing will ever get better....win at all costs at the expense of the america that is not truly represented in washington.....if you can't pay a lot of money to politicians then you have no voice.....what a glorious mess

    November 2, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  190. Vito

    As with Weiner and others, its not about the facts, its about his lying and misrepresenting them. If he had just said, yes there were unfounded allegations of sexual misconduct, and the lawyers thought it would be cheaper/quicker to settle rather than fight them, that's fine. However, once he goes down the "I knew nothing about it" route, then suddenly changes his story several times within a day or two, that's when I begin to doubt his character.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  191. Ken in Gaithersburg, MD

    Let's see - Cain lies about what he knows about the existence of such charges (whoops, just a memory lapse); Cain lies about his plan to electrocute illegal immigrants (it's a joke, ha ha); Cain lies about his 9-9-9 plan (says people paying payroll taxes will get a 6% cut - 15.3%-9% when in fact it's an increase since 9% is greater than the 7.65% that people actually pay). Is there a pattern here?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  192. Ed from Atlanta

    Herman Cain is a puppet and his recent miscues show that the people pulling his strings have no expectation that he will win the nomination. His campaign seems to be an effort to place a black man in the picture in order to make the Republicans seem to be socially and culturally correct. Much like Michael Steele, he is just window dressing of a half-hearted effort to appear to be progressive. Now...if he was a black Mormon....

    November 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  193. Eric from Houston

    This charge should ruin Politico for not having enough information to back up their story. This is a headline event... the details just aren't there.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  194. Smerlap Kent, WA

    Don't you think a person running to be President of the United States should be able to answer this kind of question? If the press can rattle him over something like this, how will he respond to a real crisis when he become President. If you want the trust of the American people your life is an open book or should not run

    November 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  195. Jenny

    If the charges were/are true, yes. If not, yes too because en toto he's unqualified. These charges would only be icing on his unqualifed cake.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  196. Carolyn in SD

    It's not the affair – it's the lying about it. The trying to cover it up.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
  197. Anne Wend, Charleston, IL

    Yes it should affect his continuation as a viable candidate. You were giving him to much credit Jack that he has "bumbled" his response to the situation. Yes, we don't know all the facts, yet, but the fact he changed his story so many times, in my book that's lying and a cover-up. Is this an example of how he will handle America's financial crisis or foreign policy? Can American citizens really believe what he is telling us is the truth? I do't think so!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
  198. Gary Maddox

    I am not going to pull the race card but, In this republican politcal battle overall, it just happen to be that all candidates had one issue or another llegally. It didn't run so long when Romney had illegals working for him and it was brought up in the Republican debate, but still didn't get carried on that long. Now Cain is being dragged through the mud for a 90's allegations. I think everyone has a past and that should not influence present and future plans, unless he was locked up for most of his life for murder, rape, or a Pedophile. Other than that good luck Cain.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
  199. Nita, Acworth, GA

    Well, maybe not. If he sings a few more choruses of Amazing Grace before the cameras like he recently did before the National Press Club we will forget his alleged harrassments and think what a fine Christian he is.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
  200. Judy Leighton

    Yes it should. He is arrogant and uppity and obviously is lying. Hope the ladies can speak their minds. He is showing his true demeanor now. I am a republican but would never vote for him and race has nothing to do with it. Judy in NM.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  201. Rlg

    Since he can't get seen to get his story straight, yes, he should not be running. There are so many liars in politics now, we certainly don't need any more. Whatever one does, good or bad, those things one should own up to.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  202. David Spangler

    It's not the 12-year-old allegation so much – who hasn't acted in poor judgment or done something stupid or insensitive in their life that they regret. It's the rediculous, transparent side-stepping, evasion, and spin that Cain is displaying about the whole thing. Who can trust a guy who treats the electorate like they're morons. Cain's not unique either, all of the Republican candidates seem utterly incapable of intelligent discourse on relevant issues. Give me 4 more years of Barrack Obama.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  203. Patty Heenan

    It's not about the possible event now but he said there was no such thing, now he acknowledges it.... ah... it's always the cover up ....

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  204. hoop

    I might have looked past it if he had been honest about it when first questioned. What's more troubling is that he seemed totally unprepared as if he never anticipated being questioned about it. I'm pretty sure the duties of the president will require a lot of fore thought and planning; something Mr. Cain apparently isn't capable of.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  205. AdmiralBrown

    I’ll wait to hear what the accusers’ charges are. Was this an isolated incident or was there a pattern of abuse?
    I’m more concerned with how badly Cain is handling this incident. He should just come clean and let the cards fall where they may. Funny how almost everyone in this sort of situation makes it worse by not stating all the facts the first time and moving on. Rather they hope the issue will go away. The only person I can think of who came clean immediately was David Letterman.
    I don’t want a president with a selective memory or lack of memory.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  206. SMC

    Cain's candidacy should've been ruined when he proposed raising taxes on the middle class and poor to fund a tax cut for the wealthiest.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  207. Mike, Calgary


    The charge itself won't ruin Cain's candidacy, but his response might . . .

    November 2, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  208. Mark from Baltimore, Md

    I believe that anything in one's past should be open to the public if that person is campaigning to be the leader of the most powerful country in the world. Herman Cain may be completely innocent, although his actions speak to the contrary. He said that he did not initially remember the allegations, because it was 12 years ago. I am 46 years old, and if an employee filed sexual harassment charges against me back in 1999, I would sure as hell remember it still today. I'm not buying Mr. Cain's explanation, and guilty or innocent, it shows very poor judgement on his part.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  209. Charles from San Antonio, Tx

    "Should sexual harassment allegations cost Cain his White House run?" To me this is a mute question when any voter that has even a small amount of knowledge of what "a person's morals should include" would never give voting for him or any candiate accused of this type of behavior – where there is smoke there is more than likely a fire. However with this set aside this man has no experience in the public service rat race and should never be seriously considered as POTUS – believe me he won't be nominated but this won't be the reason – HE IS NOT QUALIFIED IN SO MANY WAYS

    November 2, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
  210. deb

    Yes, it should. It is not so much the charge as it is the fact that he "forgot" about being charged, not just once, but twice. He obviously thinks little of the charge, and appearing to "forget" that this happened is very concerning, whether he is innocent of the charges or not.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
  211. Rajiv Shaw

    His story has changed too often for his credibility. Yes, he should be held accountable for his actions, just as any other American.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
  212. MazeAndBlue

    This is the biggest news story so far in this republican debate season. Wow!!! What does that tell you?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
  213. Jason Collin from Dallas, TX

    Allegations are just that – allegations. Until there are facts, he should not be dragged through the mud.

    HOWEVER, his handling of the situation certainly shows us how he would respond to sensitive issues as President...and his back-and-forth answers do not illicit any confidences.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
  214. Michael Stephen Dornbiere

    Herman 'King'..Um...I mean...Don 'Cain'...No wait...I think I got it! Its 'Don King'..and 'Herman Cain'. Yah..thats it! I get them confused sometimes. They seem to be interchangeable? But seriously...The sexual harassment charge is a drop in the bucket compared to this guy not knowing that China is a 'nuclear power'! I mean...is this for real? Wow!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  215. James in SC

    I'm glad that all the people who have contributed to Cain's campaign have so much money to throw around, since he has no chance to be Prez. Seriously, a man who has never held a public office being POTUS & being a "businessman" who turned Godfathers around by eliminating jobs by closing half of their stores is just short of hysterical laughter. If the harassment charges are true, & the women should be allowed to speak, then it will put the final touch on Cain's retirement cake.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  216. Timi from Maryland

    Correction Jack
    Herman Cain is NOT a politician; he was a former CEO of a Pizza Joint. I don’t believe that a 12yrs sexual harassment charges will ruin his candidacy, however if the accuser decided to speak out now just to claim her 15mins of Fame, she might be ruin for the rest of her life. We don’t need to know the details of her claim; she might want to consult Anita Hill or the Hotel Maid in the IMF DSK case before she breaches her contract.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  217. Gigi Oregon

    I think it is the media who needs to wake up. We don't want to know it, we don't want to hear it and let it die. It is a waste of time and money to prove it. If it was serious he would be in jail.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  218. Jim

    with Bill Clinton you went after the accuser, don't you think you should do the same favor for Cain? It would show you are fair with both parties.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  219. karmamaster

    One of the women wants to speak according to her attorney, but must be released from a confidentiality agreement. The fact that such an agreement exists is an indication that there was a payoff and people don't payoff complainants like this unless they feel guilty. How can the moralistic right wing of the GOP justify supporting a man who first commits on sin and then commits another sin by paying to keep his indiscretion quiet. They have a conundrum.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
  220. rick

    The charge? No. If he was guilty of sexual harassment. Yes. And that's what seems to be the case here. If he was innocent he should have fought it, he didn't so he's guilty since there's no other way to disprove it short of a trial.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
  221. Graham

    I don't think it SHOULD cause him his campaign if he was innocent but I do think that the other parties should be able to tell their side since he essentially breached the confidentiality agreement by commenting on their performance. The way he has been handling this whole mess does speak to his inexperience in a crisis and doesn't paint him as someone who's ready to lead the free world. The way the GOP is handling it is at least interesting. Since all this is happening to Hermain Cain simply because he's Black and they continually denied that the increased death threats, birther movement, etc. had nothing to do with the fact that President Obama is half Black, maybe it was because he's half-white.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
  222. Clare from Florida

    Perhaps two charges of sexual harrassment from 12 years ago is not a big deal to many conservatives. What is a big deal is that Herman Cain has lied and lied and lied to the American people. His story keeps changing. That shows the character of the man. His short temper showed today. He is an arrogant bully who has shown he does not have the discipline or even the knowledge to be President.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  223. Mike in SA

    Did Paula Jones - or Genniifer Flowers, or... - ruin Clinton's candidacy? I don't think so!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  224. Irish Rebel in Maine

    As a member of the No Party he should recognize the word No,... but alas it will have no effect judging by our voting record and habits. Dis-functional candidates from dis-functional voters the sum does equal its parts.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
  225. Emma in Baltimore

    An event per se shouldn't define a persons qualifications. However, how that person handles that event, both during and after, should.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
  226. Clay Harper

    Yes, it should cost him. He is running for the Presidency of our country, not a city council seat in East Covina. Even if he were running in East Covina he is still accountable for his actions!

    Clay in Oracle, Az.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  227. Evil Hollywood Liberal

    Sure – character counts, right? That's what the Republicans keep telling us.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  228. carmen in colorado

    Yes, it should matter for it says volumes about a candiidate. If he is inocent Cain will be able to clear his iname but if he is not and he is just another cheating husband and liar then he does not deserve to aspire to be President of this great nation.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  229. Billy Oklahoma

    While the sexual harassment is an important subject, the inability to answer the questions is a more scary topic. Just like Palin or many of the other candidates, if you can't answer the questions intelligently, truthfully, and consistently you can't be president!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  230. BobbyJohnson in denver

    Jack? The whole point here is not whether Cain was involved in a sexual anything. Facts are out now that he was. He deny's this then confess's to it after the fact. EWWWW
    I am a Dyed in the wool republican He aint gonna get my vote...

    November 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  231. Kathleen G., Twin Cities

    Clinton and some of the others can't be compared to Cain as there is the matter of consent. Any candidate that can't be respectful of half of America doesn't deserve the honor of representing all of America.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  232. Elizabeth

    I think Herman Cain is just "playing" with this so called run for presidency thing anyway. He's a likable guy and having fun with all the attention. But President of the United States? Really? The smear thing is just that much more stupidness in an aready tiresome political world.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  233. Adam Ant

    Dear CNN,
    Stop wasting our time with the Cain propaganda and start covering the real news!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  234. Will from Boston

    its never about the sex. What takes them down every time is the lie, the cover up. And Cain? he lied.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  235. Nurse Lisa in Shelton CT

    it didn't ruin Clarence Thomas' chances to sit on the Supreme Court even though he called it a high tech lynching. And so we currently have a justice (w/ either lies vs. omissions about his wife's lobbying income and the potenital tainted impact to his votes on very significant legislation). I thought the sexual harassment charge against Thomas was credible from the testimony and was disapponted when my CT senators did not. I don't have all the facts because Cain's statements have changed.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  236. Hawk

    I don't know about 12 years ago but the now is that he has taken illegal funding, also the koch brothers have funneled millions to him . when the corporate bought and paid for supreme court 5 consertives said that corporations were people they just made it easier for big oil and other corporations to buy the elections. how about clarance thomas who has lied and stole is still sitting on that court.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  237. Jim in Indianapolis

    If Clinton can get away with worse, why is this news? You are making this sound worse than what it is. Give the man a break.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  238. John Q Public

    So, let's see.... he is accused of harassing two women to the point where they press charges against him. He "settles" with them, paying them money and requiring them to remain quite about what happened. The story breaks and he flip flops on his story...this after having nine days to prepare for it breaking. Then after he claims that he has been falsely accused, his accusers say that they want the gag restriction lifted so they can tell their story. Hmmmm......

    It doesn't take The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, or Columbo to figure out that there is more to this story than Mr Cain wants us to know about. It will not shine a favorable light on the candidate, no matter how it turns out. The big power of the boss is the pressure they can apply. If there were nothing to this, there would have been no hush money payment and the investigation would have been done by an outside, independent, source. If the gag restriction is not lifted and this just dies on the vine from lack of info, it will be one more indication that Herman Cain is a dirt bag and not the hero of the story.

    Does it matter...absolutely. Character is about the only thing we can judge these people by. Who knows what they will face and how they will react after they are elected. The best measure we can take of them is their character. I for one am disappointed in Cain and those who defend him without hearing the other side of the story.

    For all those who would attack the media or the accusers, get a grip. This is the job of the media. If there is nothing to the story, its no big deal. If there is, why sweep it under the rug? The accusers? Let's not attack them until we at least hear from them. and hear what the details were. Then we can decide whether to throw them to the lions, or not.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  239. rick

    Wow, I just read someone above equating sexual harassment to being part of a person's sex life as in, a person's sex life is irrelevent. Just....wow.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  240. wayne

    no jack..but the felonies committed with his campaign's finances.. and the fact he doesn't know that China already has nuclear weapons.. sure does. As does most of his "policy of the day" approach to today's issues.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  241. Wally Wolf (Bedford, Texas)

    If this is the way Cain handles pass allegations regarding sexual harassment, I seriously doubt that he's ready for prime time where he would be dealing with world leaders (of course he's proud of the fact that he wouldn't know their names) and any kind of crisis whatsoever. He may consider running for dog catcher, but definitely not president of the United States.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
  242. Annie, Atlanta

    Personally, anyone making a joke (or not) about frying Mexicans on an electrical fence has no purpose in a decent society, let alone at the helm. But that's just me.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  243. Barry

    I don't know whether the reports of harassment are true, but Cain lost me when he said that that the Occupy Movement members should go and get jobs.

    Wasn’t it Woodrow Wilson, or was it Herbert Hoover, who made a similarly outrageous statement about those who were unemployed during the Great Depression, saying that they should go out and get a job, as he did.

    You can't be more out of touch with reality and oblivious to the true plight of people, than that!

    Isn't that like Marie Antoinette, who upon learning that the people were starving and had no bread to eat, said: Then let them eat cake!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
  244. SDFrankie

    Cover Herman in butter because he is toast. He's dead already, he's just too stupid to lay down. He knew before he started his campaign that these skeletons were in his closet, but his arrogance told him he could keep it quiet. Politico gave him a 10 day head start on the story and he was still unprepared when it broke! That's a mortal sin right there. Stick a fork in him. He's done.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  245. terry helton

    These allegations,which are looking more facvtual everyday, shouldn't be a factor in ending his campaign but if he continues to lie about it and refuses to "bite the bullet" come clean he might as well kiss his political butt goodbye. I'm tired of conservatives acting all high and mighty whenever these scandals liberals and Democrats,then they start Wah! Wah! Wah! when the spot light is turned on them. They are nothing but hypocrites anyway.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  246. Just Saying

    The more troubling aspect of this is that, with about 10 days notice, Cain could not get his facts and his story straight. It is beyond belief that the CEO of a professional organization such as the National Restaurant Association would not remember the details, including the fact and amount of payments to his accusers. And that would be whether or not there was any merit to the accusations. Sometimes accusations are valid. But there are also crazy people out there who are able to take offense where none was intended and to see objectionable behavior where none occurred. We don't know, on the basis of the facts before us, whether or not there was any validity to the complaints. But what is clear is that the way in which Cain has responded – the apparent lies, the stumbling admissions of additional facts, etc. – all point to a candidate and an organization that are ill-prepared to deal with even minimal crises. If he had come out and said "Yes, there were allegations. They were investigated. I never intended to make anyone feel uncomfortable or to solicit improper sexual favors, but I was obviously insenstitive in something I said or did. Private settlements were arranged, including non-disclosure aggreements which I will honor by not discussing details. Importantly, the events were a learning experience for me and I have become more attuned to possible misinterpretation by others of the things I say and do. The experience gave me cause to reflect on how I had behaved and I am a better man for the opportunity to reflect on things. That is all I have to say on the matter. Thank you." That would have been the mature response. But we did not get that. What we got was a grossly bungled attempt at cover-up and then blame-shifting – none of it worthy of a serious candidate to be President of the United States. Just Saying...

    November 2, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  247. Robrob

    It's not so much what you did that gets you in the most trouble as do the cover-up and lying after.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  248. Martin

    If the charge is proven to be accurate and true then absolutely it should cause him to scrap his candidacy.

    A country needs to hold their elected officials to a much higher standard than their citizens. Scandals of this type usually mean that there are other skeletons that just haven't come out of the closet yet.

    Wnen a minor drug charge before you are of the age of majority can stop you from travelling outside the country, any sort of charge if proven should stop someone from holding elected office.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
  249. James

    I missed the part where CNN provided proof Cain is guilty......I guess that's something no one is interested in anymore.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:58 pm |