Do you think Herman Cain can overcome the allegations against him to win the nomination?Please discuss in the context of how the information was leaked, and Cain's suggestion that his rival Perry...

Do you think Herman Cain can overcome the allegations against him to win the nomination?

Please discuss in the context of how the information was leaked, and Cain's suggestion that his rival Perry is behind this.  Use the link for a source article.

Expert Answers
brettd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I have no idea whether or not the allegations against Herman Cain are true or not.  Even if they are, it is clear this happened years ago, and the fact that they are resurfacing now has everything to do with presidential politics.

While it's natural for Cain to not only suspect his Republican rivals of leaking the story to the press, it's also a political tactic to accuse one of your main challengers of the leak.  It's called deflection, where you hope the public will start to think about the leak allegation more than the sexual harassment issue with Cain. 

Campaigns commonly "stock up" on potentially damaging information about their rivals, and wait to release them unless their candidate falls behind in the polls or a challenger is too close for comfort.  So it's quite possible Perry's campaign was the source of this information.  It probably won't matter, however, and Cain will have trouble overcoming this.

scarletpimpernel eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It will depend on if Cain can get back to discussing the issues. I think that his strategy of accusing Perry's camp of releasing the information was a poor move because it keeps people talking about unsupported allegations rather than what American voters are interested in. This type of politics is, unfortunately, part of the American landscape. What I have found interesting is how the media has handled the story. If Candidate Obama had been accused of sexual harassment back in 2008 when he was first running, I truly believe that many in the media would cry racism. However, not once have I heard that said of the Herman Cain situation. Similarly, President Obama had no foreign affairs experience when he was elected. In fact, his attendance in the Senate was dismal, yet his lack of experience didn't seem to be an issue for him; so Cain could also get past that "weakness."



bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Much in the same way that Gary Hart, the front-running Democrat during the early 1988 Presidential primaries, fell from grace for his well-publicized extra-marital affair, I imagine Herman Cain will soon tumble from the top of the Republican front-runners. It wouldn't surprise me if Gov. Rick Perry was behind the leak: He is a laughable candidate in the first place, just as is Cain. Perry is such a joke that David Letterman now has a regular feature on his show called "Rick Perry. Drunk?" that shows clips of Perry's bizarre behavior during speeches and interviews. Hopefully this scandal, one that should not be taken lightly even if it did happen several years ago, will present the GOP with a better option--probably Mitt Romney.

Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It will be difficult to tell what Cain's undoing will be, but I do not think he will be able to take the nomination.  In spite of being a staunch liberal and Democrat, I do believe there are enough thinking Republicans to make his nomination unlikely.  He seems to almost take pride in his ignorance of foreign affairs, and he clearly is completely clueless about fiscal policy or economics.  He has, at least as much as Romney, shifted positions on many occasions, and I don't think his charm and great singing voice will get him much further.  This latest issue might simply be the straw that broke the camel's back, not so much because it might be true, but because he has changed stories and avoided questioning.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It's not the allegations that matter, it's how he's reacting.  He's not reacting like someone who is ready to be President.  Obviously, he knew the allegations had been made in the past.  If he were really a person with organizational skills and foreshight, he would have known that they would become an issue and he would have had a plan for dealing with them.  Instead, he keeps changing his story and flailing around.  It's not the allegations that will sink him.  It's his reaction which makes him look completely unready for high office.