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Should Herman Cain Withdraw from the Presidential Race?

November 29, 2011

Maybe it’s time for Herman Cain to give it up. Or is it? Put aside that silly 999 tax plan that will unfairly burden the nation’s already overburdened poor, the sexual harassment allegations can’t be ignored, and with the latest announcement by Ginger White of a 13-year extramarital affair (which was consensual), one wonders if it’s not getting to be too much and time for the man to step aside.

Or do we really care?

While all the sexual harassment allegations put the Mr. Cain’s character into question, the questions I keep going back to are why now and does anyone really care? These claims of sexual improprieties occurred a long time ago, 14 years ago I think, so why did the all these women wait until right now to come forward? No one came forward when Mr. Cain announced his candidacy, but as soon as his campaign took off, there they were. Why then?
 
In a way I sort of feel sorry for Mr. Cain. There’s too much smoke here for me not to believe there’s a fire. He’s also contradicted himself and money has been paid out in exchange for silence and then there was his laughable defense: “For every one person that comes forward with a false accusation, there are probably thousands who will say that none of that sort of activity ever came from Herman Cain” (which I guess means that because thousands of people will never read this blog posting, it must mean it was never written), but we’ve seen a lot of smoke flowing over a lot of people’s heads in the past and we’ve either ignored it or moved past it. So, yes, in a way, I sort of feel sorry for Mr. Cain because is he any different than anyone else?

Put aside thoughts that Mr. Cain himself might be a liar and a cheater for a minute. Liars and cheaters aren’t new to politics. Everyone remembers Presidents Kennedy and Clinton. How about Newt Gingrich who is surging in the polls behind Herman Cain’s scandals? Has everyone who suddenly supports Mr. Gingrich’s campaign forgotten the events surrounding the end of his first marriage to Jackie Battley and that he allegedly divorced her while she lay in a hospital bed recovering from uterine cancer and that he allegedly told his campaign manager, L.H. Carter, “She’s not young enough or pretty enough to be the wife of the President. And besides, she has cancer.”, as well as the multiple affairs he’s allegedly had, not only while being married, but while he was leading an investigation into President Clinton’s behavior with Monica Lewinsky?

Or do we just not care anymore?

If we care, that’s great, and if we don’t care, that’s fine, but let’s at least try and be consistent about it all. Let’s not hold someone up to standards we’re not willing to hold others up to. I’m not anyone’s judge and I don’t say any of this to defend or condemn anyone. I’m just tired of the hypocrisy and hope that maybe one day we’ll see political candidates with integrity who are seeking office for no other reason than to help people but I fear those days are gone.

“I don’t think politics has anything to do with left, right, or center. It has to do with trying to do right by people.” – Paul Wellstone

I’d also like to see voters, as well as candidates, stop the name calling and to start focusing on real facts and issues instead of the stuff that TV tells us is important.

Personally, I wonder if the candidates don’t welcome these types of scandals and allegations because everyone involved knows they’ll be forgotten in time and as long as they’re news, they allow everyone to avoid talking about the real issues.

On a sidenote that has absolutely nothing to do with anything, if one can forget that Mr. Cain might be a liar and a cheater, one almost has to admire his stamina.

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. November 29, 2011 1:53 pm

    His affair isn’t what bothers me about Cain truthfully. It’s the sexual harassment allegations. Those charges are indicative of a man who does not get it – and by “it” I mean he doesn’t understand why or how he’s inappropriate and biased toward women.

    The story of Newt’s treatment of his first wife disgusts me just as much as the story of McCain’s treatment of his first wife and the treatment of Elizabeth Edwards by John Edwards. It’s not the extra-marital affairs that are so bothersome! It’s how they’ve bulldozed people – injured and/or ill people – they purported to have loved. That’s what gets under my skin.

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  2. November 30, 2011 1:40 pm

    Ditto what Jane said. While I’d vote for a guy who is a lousy husband, I wouldn’t vote for one who is a lousy human being. Beyond that, I’d like to see them all stand up and tell me why they’re the right guy for the job, rather than blathering on about why the other guy isn’t.

    In this day and age, I have to question the intelligence of anyone who chooses to run for a high-end post if they have a host of skeletons dancing around in their closet. At the very least, you’d think they’d take a proactive stance in their own campaign and come out of the gates with something like this:

    “I want to be your President. YOURS. I’ll work my ass off for you and I won’t stop until every last person in this country is housed, fed, educated, and employed to the degree that they’d like to be. I’ll take steps to keep us safe and to secure our place in the global economy, but I will not use the powers of my office to bully anyone, at home or overseas. I’ll work with every single elected official and ordinary citizen to build a better, stronger, more cohesive country. I care deeply about the world that we’ll pass down to future generations, so I will look at both the short and long-term impact of the choices we make, and will do my best to weigh my decisions responsibly.

    I will answer all questions honestly and directly. I know that my answers might not always be what you want to hear, but you can count on two things from them–they’ll be truthful and they’ll be open for discussion. If you have a better way, I want to hear about it and I will never let my ego stop me from utilizing the talents and wisdom of others.

    I need to tell you right up front that while I have the ability and the desire to be a steadfast, effective, and honorable leader, there are areas of my life where I have not and do not shine. I was not a good husband. In retrospect, I should not have married because I was
    not ready or able to be monogamous, and because of that, I hurt the very person I had vowed to cherish. I regret that deeply, but I cannot change the past. Additionally, I allowed my hunger for career success to drive me, and I prioritized many of the wrong things. My family came in second, at best.

    While I clearly am not husband material, I assure you that I am, in fact, Presidential material. I can lead this country out of its current state of uncertainty and return us to a position of strength, growth, and prosperity. I have a clear vision and a workable plan, and I hope to be given the opportunity to detail and implement the changes that I know will head us in the right direction.”

    If a candidate were to make a statement like this, he’d have my attention.

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    • Michael Fishman permalink
      December 3, 2011 6:56 am

      Well you have my vote with that speech! You make a great point by pointing out that there’s a difference between a lousy husband and a lousy human being and it’d be a lot easier for me to support a candidate who cheated on his wife and told me about it than a candidate who cheated on his wife and had such little respect for me – and such arrogance – that he felt he could get away with lying about it.

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  3. November 30, 2011 5:55 pm

    Jane said exactly what I was thinking. How any person chooses to treat another human being, and how easily they are able to cast them aside, is a nauseating glimpse into their character. Very well done post, Michael…thanks for sharing!

    Like

    • Michael Fishman permalink
      December 3, 2011 6:51 am

      Thanks, Melissa. And thank you for reading!

      Like

  4. November 30, 2011 7:45 pm

    What bothers me is that these “issues” with potential candidates and members of our political offices is that the public shrugs its shoulders and says “That’s the way it is.” I can’t accept that. It’s wrong. Lying, cheating, stealing…they are all wrong.

    Our politicians need to be held to higher standards, not because they are perfect, but because they are representing ALL of us. And in doing so they MUST adhere to strict moral and ethical standards. If they aren’t capable of that, or have a shady background, then they shouldn’t run for office and if they are already in office and find that they can’t remain ethical, then they need to get out. And we Americans need to stop reelecting politicians who aren’t honorable (Rangel comes to mind very quickly). It’s repulsive that they literally break laws but get to keep their public position, pension AND get reelected!

    Thank you for letting me rant. 😉

    Like

    • Michael Fishman permalink
      December 3, 2011 6:30 am

      There’s nothing better than a good rant and you’re always welcome to rant here! I agree with you but I don’t know that we’ll ever care enough to start making changes. Sadly, we seem to be more interested in the American Idol results shows than we do with who’s doing what in Washington. I’m just as guilty, too. I read something and I get mad and then something new pops up on the news and the old story gets forgotten. Charles Rangel is a good example of a person who has no business in politics.

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  5. Lucinda permalink
    November 30, 2011 10:17 pm

    While I don’t honestly care that much about the allegations, I think it’s telling about what kind of man is drawn to politics when pretty much every candidate has something like this come out. Adultery, harassment, financial impropriety, racist comments and/or associations. The idea that an honest man or woman can be drawn to politics just doesn’t exist. Instead we see the power-hungry who aren’t really in it for the good of the people and they don’t care who they hurt to get there. It saddens me that this is where we are. As for Cain, meh…maybe he can power through it all. You never know.

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    • Michael Fishman permalink
      December 3, 2011 6:20 am

      I think there have been honest people in politics, Lucinda. I’m biased because both of these men were from Minnesota, but I think Hubert Humphrey and Paul Wellstone were two honest people who really cared about what they were doing for people. It’s also sometimes a blurry line as to what’s acceptable and what isn’t nowadays. We have a Congressman here, Keith Ellison, who is a really good legislator, but when he was first running for office there were stories in the paper about unpaid parking tickets and unpaid fines. So what does that say about his character? I don’t think I could name anyone who I think is in politics now who is truly virtuous or who puts our welfare as a top priority.

      Thanks for stopping over and reading, Lucinda!

      Like

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