Herman Cain, who’s departure from the GOP Presidential Race was most unfortunate given that some of the sexual harassment claims he faced suddenly surfaced after his political star brightened, did today what was no surprise to this political observer: gave his endorsement to Newt Gingrich as the GOP nominee for President.
It was no surprise because both Cain and Gingrich are friends, and it was Newt who came to Herman’s defense while Cain was being pelted with accusations from so many women the media started giving them numbers – like “Woman #1,” and so on. Of course, with Newt’s many problems with ex-wives, it seems he’s found a kindred spirit in Herman Cain.
Whatever the case, the most interesting aspect of the Cain endorsement is that it means something. There are people, conservatives regardless of color, who still say they miss Herman Cain’s involvement in the race. And I think the reason is that Mr. Cain’s just like them. In his way, Cain almost became the Sarah Palin of this year’s election. Arguably he was on his way to becoming just that before the women issues popped up and Cain, well, caved in.
What GOPers who like Cain say is that he is not afraid to “call it as he sees it” – and mostly what comes forward is a point of view that can be said to be old school, “stop whining and get a job” ethics. As simple and as small as that sounds, the message does resonate with a lot of people.
The Cain endorsement seems to establish a clear divide between those traditional GOP members who fear a Mitt Romney-ran Republican Party, and those who fear a Newt Gingrich-ran GOP. All of this is sweet music to the ears of Democrats, who look and see a GOP divided, directionless, and angry.