News Column

Republican Presidential Candidate Cain Stumbles in Interview

Nov. 15, 2011

Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain stumbled in an interview Tuesday when asked whether he agreed with President Obama's decision to back Libyan rebels in overthrowing the late leader Moammar Gadhafi.

Cain paused, then said: "No, that's a different one," before asking members of the Journal Sentinel's editorial board: "Specifically, what are you asking me that I agree or not disagree with Obama?"

He then added: "I've got all of this stuff twirling around in my head."

Several U.S. newspapers compared Cain's momentary mind-freeze to Texas Gov. Rick Perry's verbal gaffe during a Republican presidential debate earlier this month.

A Journal Sentinel journalist on Cain's campaign bus later asked him to clarify the blunder.

"I paused to make sure I didn't say something wrong. The fact of the matter is, I didn't. I didn't say anything wrong ... but the fact I didn't answer immediately -- I'm going to be honest with you, that is silly. That is silly!" Cain said.

With two months to go before the Republican primary season begins, Cain is running nearly even with his most likely challenger, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Cain's relative strength in polls comes despite a flurry of sexual harassment claims lodged against the former pizza executive by four American women.

Source: Copyright 2011 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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