I thought yesterday – should I write something about Herman Cain?
I am, frankly, depressed at the way Cain and his campaign responded to the Politico hit piece. Partly because it was so very, very predictable – the media will find any bit of dirt they can to hang on a conservative, especially a minority or female conservative. I mean, have we learned nothing from the Palin candidacy? (And spare me the “Romney or Perry leaked this” palaver; even if it’s true, it’s the media that will romp and play with the story).
Beyond that, though? Cain’s response was straight outta amateur hour. Cain knew that this story was coming; Politico contacted Cain’s campaign over a week ago on the story.
Joe Doakes of Como Park writes:
I saw Herman Cain on Fox News this weekend, discussing the sexual harassment issue. He blew it.
He said he’d never sexually harassed anybody and that if the Restaurant Association settled a claim, he didn’t know about it and he hoped they didn’t pay anybody because he never did anything wrong.
Now it appears there’s an out-of-court settlement involving two women who got a year’s pay each.
It’s never the offense that sinks you, it’s always the cover-up.
He should have said: “I was accused of sexual harassment when I worked for the restaurant association 20 years ago. I denied I did anything wrong at that time, and I deny it today. We ended up settling out of court because it was cheaper to settle than continue paying the lawyers. Both sides agreed never to discuss the details of the settlement and I’m sticking to our agreement. That’s all I’m going to say about it.”
Wise words for every politician, to say nothing of every non-traditional conservative.
That would have been honest and believable. Most people would said “huh” and moved on. Now, it’s not the accusation that troubles people – hell, lots of people get falsely accused of stuff and have to settle or take a plea to avoid losing everything in litigation – it’s the lying about it that troubles us. Next, he’ll play the race card and compare himself to Clarence Thomas. When that doesn’t work, he’ll probably enter sexual harassment training for a weekend and have Billy Graham pray for him. When his wife stands beside him on stage saying she’s always believed in him, that’s the death knell.
It won’t work, Herm. It’s never the crime that voters resent. It’s always the cover-up.
And there’s the lesson, again, for all you minority conservatives who want to get off the liberal plantation, just as the Palin candidacy should have been a teaching moment for conservative women who want to put on some shoes and get out of the kitchen; just being as good as your detractors isn’t enough; you have to be better. You can’t get by being smarter than they are; you have to be smarter than they are depraved, patrician and nasty. And with the Dems’ oppo-research and smear machines, that is going to have to be smart indeed.