No Room For Error

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.

30 thoughts on “No Room For Error

  1. Yea, it’s looking pretty bad for Cain. Now, one of the alleged victims’ lawyer is pleading the the Restaurant Ass’n to release his gold digging client from her non disclosure agreement so she can lie to the media, again!

  2. On his radio show last night Mark Levin said that the antics of the lawyer of “woman number 1” were due to her being one of the sources of the Politico story. Apparently, when there is a nondisclosure clause in a settlement, even going on record that there was a settlement is a violation of the clause. The lawyer is trying to protect his client, e.g. get the clause removed so his client won’t be held accountable for what she has already done.

  3. 1. I’d go farther than Joe…I don’t think you can just fall back on the Confidentiality Clause. Voters are gonna wanna know what behavior was involved, so they can make their own judgment.

    2. Thanks again for the laughs. I’m gonna have to remind Gart Hart, John Edwards and even Bill Clinton that this is ONLY a conservative, minority or female media witchhunt. And have clairvoyant Bosshoss tell me exactly on what facts he bases his opinion on that the woman’s a liar. Really…something other than politics? Cuz for all I know, the alleged victims were far-rightwingers up until the time this incident occurred.

  4. It’s bad enough that Cain and his staff couldn’t figure out how to do damage control, but it appears that he has no ground game in Iowa and New Hampshire. Maybe he was going to pull it off without any of the traditional county and precinct level organizing, but that seems unlikely.

  5. Mackbee, the media whitewashed Clinton & Edwards.
    Clinton had a reputation as womanizer throughout his political career. In the interview he did with 60 Minutes during his ’92 presidential run he was asked about it in very general terms, he acknowledged it, said that was over, and ace journalist Mike Wallace did nothing to follow up. Drudge got famous becauseh e exposed the Lewinsky scandal after the MSM had spiked it.

    At the last minute, at 6 p.m. on Saturday evening, NEWSWEEK magazine killed a story that was destined to shake official Washington to its foundation: A White House intern carried on a sexual affair with the President of the United States!

    The DRUDGE REPORT has learned that reporter Michael Isikoff developed the story of his career, only to have it spiked by top NEWSWEEK suits hours before publication. A young woman, 23, sexually involved with the love of her life, the President of the United States, since she was a 21-year-old intern at the White House. She was a frequent visitor to a small study just off the Oval Office where she claims to have indulged the president’s sexual preference. Reports of the relationship spread in White House quarters and she was moved to a job at the Pentagon, where she worked until last month.
    The news about Edwards’ affair was broken by the National Enquirer and completely ignored by the MSM until it was no longer possible to do so — until the Enquirer produced a video tape showing Edwards with his love child. Even then it didn’t report it as fact until Edwards confessed in 2010, apparently because Reille Hunter was going to go the press herself.
    Hart, like Clinton, had reputation as womanizer when he began his career in politics. Like Edwards, his infidelity was ongoing and not especially well hidden.
    Compare this with the coverage of the Cain allegations.
    It is difficult for me to debate liberals because I find it hard to believe that people who apparently live as adult, responsible human beings can hold beliefs that are so stupid and so at odds with the reality the rest of us inhabit.

  6. Bill Clintons rape of Juanita Broaddrick…..NBC investigated it (probably expected to find holes in the story) and when it turned out to be incredibly credible, spiked the story. But the Wall Street Journal found out about it and broke the news. NBC then ran their story, which left little doubt about Ms Broaddricks story.

    But Clinton is just a good ole white boy Democrat, so the story never got traction.

  7. Shall we stroll down memory lane re Clinton and his media enablers?
    The GOP may have made the Lewinsky affair a big deal because of politics, but Clinton’s behavior in his public actions to save his ass from the fallout of the scandal, from paying the price for his own behavior, were vicious and despicable.
    -Lewinsky did not break the scandal. She never wanted to go public. She was a democrat from a family of politically active democrats. It was Lewinsky confidant Linda Tripp who spilled the beans and who had custody of the blue dress. Nevertheless Clinton put into motion plans to destroy Lewinsky, to tarnish her public reputation, even though she had done nothing to harm him and even though he knew that she was telling the truth.
    -After Tripp announced that she had audio tapes of her conversations with Lewinsky, Clinton political appointee Kenneth Bacon, got hold of Tripp’s personnel files at the Pentagon and leaked them to the press. Yes, it happened, the guy admitted it, it was illegal and he knew it was illegal. Linda Tripp was persecuted by Clinton not because she lied but because she told the truth.
    -Clinton aide Sydney Blumenthal was called to testify before Starr’s grand Jury re: Lewinsky. When he finished testifying he went to the press and reported that all the questions Starr’s prosecutor had asked were about Clinton’s sex activities. No way to disprove him, since grand jury proceedings are sealed, right? Wrong! Congress can break the seal and they did when they impeached Clinton. It turned out that none of the questions Bloomberg was asked by Starr’s attorneys were about sex. Blumenthal simply straight at the journalists and the news cameras and flat out lied.
    Blumenthal was later given the job of Washington Bureau chief by liberal web mag Salon. He lied to the press, and the press rewarded him for it.
    -When Starr got hold of the famous blue dress Clinton insisted on a DNA test even though he knew beyond any doubt that he had stained the dress.
    -Clinton lost his law license and admitted that he gave false and misleading testimony in the Paula Jones case while he was still president.
    Using the power of his office, Clinton slandered and sought to destroy people whose only crime was to tell the truth — and Clinton and his people repeatedly broke the law to do so.

  8. I should have mentioned, too, that at the time Kenneth Bacon broke the law by releasing Linda Tripp’s pentagon personnel files, he was married to CNN’s chief foreign corespondent Christiane Amanpour. Bacon’s political appointee job was Pentagon spokesman.
    Just keeping telling yourself, libs, that the MSM is not an arm of the Democrat party . . .

  9. Mitch your (and Joe’s) comments are so, so sad and true. I still prefer Cain – although the new info about Newt and his apparently not so messy divorce #2 make him suddenly intriguing (ABR) – but if Cain becomes the nominee, he’s gonna get hit by lots worse than what he’s seen so far.

    The campaign for a party’s nominee is AAA ball and Cain’s not consistently even meeting that standard. It has recently, finally dawned on me on how hard it truly is to run for office in the Big Time.

    And thanks to Terry for that run down memory lane. That was excellent and, um, painful.

  10. Sorry, Earsell, but I have seen too many of these supposed victims of sexual harassment looking for quick cash, including being part of the internal investigation for my company! I have a hard time believing that you are that naive. Obviously none of the settlements were big enough to suggest that it was actual contact.

  11. Kermit, I don’t deny that Cain is polling well in Iowa. If he can turn that into a caucus win, he will have established himself as a credible candidate. However, I’ve read several reports with quotes like this:

    Last week a top Republican operative in Iowa, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said, “Cain has been non-existent here. Even if he could somehow sustain his poll numbers, he has absolutely no — zero, zip, nada — organization to support him.” Link

    If you support Cain, that should concern you.

    It would be interesting if someone could win an early state without having a substantial field staff working for months. It might be possible in a primary state like New Hampshire. (Heck, it would be wonderful if someone could neutralize the cash that Romney has been handing out in New Hampshire.)

    My understanding of the Iowa caucus is that it takes organization. It’s not a straight vote. During the secondary process, precinct captains play an important role. If you don’t have a well-organized network of volunteers, and paid staff to train them and coordinate their efforts, you are not likely to win Iowa.

    Go to Bachmann’s website and see how quickly you can identify the members of her Iowa leadership team. Now try to do the same on Cain’s website.

  12. At least Nixon picked on powerful men. Clinton preyed on weak women. What chance would Kathleen Willey have against Clinton when the response of the Washington Post political reporter Jim Vandehai to the Lewinsky scandal was to accuse House Speaker Bob Livingston of infidelity? Vandehai went on to found Politico — which broke the story on Cain’s . . . what? You can’t call them accusations or charges.
    And don’t get me started on Gary Trudeau. I remember Doonesbury featured, during the Vietnam war, a loveable little character called Phred who was supposed to be Viet Cong. While Americans were fighting and dying in Vietnam Trudeau was doing his best to make Americans see the VC as fun, harmless, even loveable.
    More recently Trudeau cut an exclusive deal with McGinnis to carry excerpts of his Palin hit piece before its publication. For a week his strip featured characters simply reading the most scurrilous, unconfirmed, and unsourced stories McGinnis could find about Palin.

  13. Peter, right now my dog would out poll Obama in every state outside of the coasts. Granted that still comes close on the Electoral College count. However, if the Current Occupant does not get a big boost in the next fifteen months he is toast. That’s why the Democrats and the media (pardon the redundancy) have such a hard on for this typical political smear on Cain. He is a serious threat, and so must be destroyed, by whatever means possible. All due respect to Joe Doakes, but this current teapot tempest will likely fade, just like all of the Clinton sex scandals did. And that’s a real problem for Team Obama. Because America is seriously pissed, and it has the very real pain to back that up.

    Iowa is one state. Obama has to worry about the other 56 states. Especially the one where Austrian is spoken.

  14. Kermit, what does Obama’s low approval rating have to do with whether or not Cain is adequately prepared to compete in the Iowa caucus?

    As for the idea that the release of these allegations is a Democrat/liberal media plot to take down Cain, why would they leak the story now? Last week was the wrong October for an October Surprise.

    FWIW, Cain asserted that the Perry campaign was behind the leak.

  15. Much as I dislike the chatter from the 24/7, 18 month long campaign for President, it is a crucible of sorts to test the durability of candidates and to see how they react under fire. Naturally, the overwhelmingly left leaning MSM is going to work overtime to crush an upstart like Cain. I agree he has muffed his first chance to put down the sexual harassment issue, but it ain’t over until..etc.Using ad hominem tu quoque arguments involving Clinton is like wetting your pants while wearing a dark suit: it gives you a warm feeling and nobody notices. I imagine the candidates are living in a kind of echo chamber filled with handlers, some of whom are good and some of whom are complete idiots. One of Cain’s challenges is to get rid of the chowder headed advisors while keeping on his main message. The MSM isn’t going to report about his strengths. He has to keep being aggressive in hammering the message day in and day out. I agree 100% with Joe about the coverup being the problem. Cain needs to man up and issue the right statement and refer to it every time he’s asked. Eventually they (the MSM) will quit asking. Same principle as dealing with two year olds. Be firm and don’t negotiate with them.

  16. Since when has being “adequately prepared” been an issue? Was Obama “adequately prepared” to be President? I think the results thus far have shown conclusively that he was not. The Democrats had at least five other candidates better qualified.
    Why leak the story now? To get attention. That’s the secondary objective of the media. Primary is getting Democrats elected and furthering the Leftist agenda. Cain is a threat. He must be destroyed, by whatever means.

  17. “As for the idea that the release of these allegations is a Democrat/liberal media plot to take down Cain, why would they leak the story now?”

    Seriously, Peter?! Since when has timing had anything to do with the lefty media sycophants releasing info in an effort to damage a conservative? Pay attention; Obumbler and his legally illiterate AG Eric Holder, are under huge scrutiny right now for a variety of idiotic moves that cost lives and money. They had to do something to deflect off of their Dear Leader!

  18. Hey Terry, thanks for all the replies. And for making my point for me. Makes my job easier when someone states my case for me. As Mitch incorrectly noted “media will find any bit of dirt they can to hang on a conservative, especially a minority or female conservative”, and you just provided him with a litany of examples where the media found bits of dirt to hang on white male liberals. Look, I know it’s troubling for when the darn facts get in the way of your preconceived beliefs. But that’s what happens when you adopt an unwaivering political philosophy as the core of your belief system.

    And Bosshoss has now decided the Herman Cain case on (a) incidents at his own workplace and (b) his own personal belief in sexual harassment suits generally. Remind me to excuse you from jury duty.

    THAT’S the issue Bosshoss, we don’t know the seriousness of the settlements. But I can tell you the way to address it isn’t to deny it or say you can’t recall.

    But thanks anyways. You guys gave me some good laughs.

  19. The thing you forgot in this story is that the liberal media will blow any story out of proportion if it hurts a Republican, especially a minority Republican, that is true. What is also true is that, absent a real story, they will just make up some crap and run with THAT.

  20. J, is the liberal media responsible for Cain’s poor response to these allegations? As Mitch, Joe, and GolfDoc point out, there’s a way to handle this well, and Cain isn’t doing it.

    Kermit, if you want to believe that being unprepared for the Iowa caucus is no big deal, go ahead. I think it suggests that the campaign is either poorly funded, poorly managed, or both.

    Iowa is a make-or-break state for anyone other than Romney. Neither Bachmann nor Santorum has much money, but they have Iowa operations working to make the most of this opportunity. If Cain were serious about running for President, and not merely trying to sell books and raise his speaking fee, he’d have an Iowa operation, too.

  21. I guess Pajama Media is carrying water for the Democrats, now that they are reporting on another allegation against Cain.

  22. Earsall, et al, we need to keep in mind that first and foremost the media is there to sell newspapers (or advertising minutes) and they need to draw eyeballs to their product; they will report the news (though in the case of Democrat mis-deeds you have to drag them to it). Their second priority is selling or establishing the narrative, and there is a difference between the way this is done for the left and for the right. It is why Anita Hill gets university chairs endowed in her name and celebrated for her courage and Paula Jones is anointed Queen of the Trailer Park. It’s how a new phrase gets coined: ever notice who’s character is diminished by the term “Bimbo Eruption”? Bill Clintion is just this red-blooded American male with a charming weakness for floozies (and really, what’s the big deal, it’s only sex), while conservatives are vicious predators runnnig roughshod through fields of the flower of feminity. (And do we even need to discuss the different ways the “feminists” treat these disclosures based on politics?)

  23. I should have mentioned, too, that at the time Kenneth Bacon broke the law by releasing Linda Tripp’s pentagon personnel files, he was married to CNN’s chief foreign corespondent Christiane Amanpour.

    Christiane Amanpour was never married to Kenneth Bacon. Her husband is James Rubin who worked for the State Department during the Clinton administration and does not appear to have had any involvement with the Monica Lewinsky scandal.

  24. Since when has being “adequately prepared” been an issue? Was Obama “adequately prepared” to be President? I think the results thus far have shown conclusively that he was not. The Democrats had at least five other candidates better qualified.

    I think that whether a candidate has the relevant experience to do the job is always a relevant issue. That Obama didn’t have it in 2008 only means that Republicans should avoid making the same mistake in 2012 – particularly since Obama will be the incumbent President and this issue will not gain traction – his performance on the job however will be.

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