Blaming the Messenger and Blaming the Victims

The whole Herman Cain story has caused me more disappointment in my political allies than any other event in my time as a blogger. As I sit here, mouth agape, I am watching a number of people I respect, like Andy McCarthy at NRO, become indistinguishable from Lanny Davis and James Carville during the Clinton-Lewinski scandal.

The fact that we have a story that was reported by Politico, or Pravda for that matter, is irrelevant because we know what they reported was correct. At some point in his tenure as president of the NRA, Herman Cain was the subject of two complaints of sexual harassment that resulted in settlements in the $35-45K range being paid to the complainants and the parties are bound by an non-disclosure agreement. The fact that we don’t know anything about the substance of the complaints is the responsibility of one man: Herman Cain. Through a period of four days Cain has engaged in evasions and outright lies over the events. But no one on the right seems to care very much about that as honesty is now a bug rather than a feature in our candidates. Because Politico.

Already people are lining up to accuse the women involved of being dishonest and predatory. We’re told they are anonymous allegations. We’re told that Cain can’t respond to unknown allegations. This is just crap on its face The women aren’t anonymous. The allegations aren’t unknown. The women and allegations were sufficiently known to allow the NRA to cut them checks. We, the American public, are kept in the dark because Herman Cain won’t ask the NRA to release all sides from the non-disclosure agreement. Because Politico.

Herman Cain’s pattern of lying about these incidents began in 2003, by his own admission, when he told his campaign manager there was one incident while he knew there were at least two settlements. This isn’t important. Because Politico.

We’re told that most sexual harassment claims are frivolous and people who make them are just paid off, willy nilly, to leave because of the expense of litigation. Is that true in your company? How many of you have wives, daughters, etc., who have sued their boss for sexual harassment just to collect the money? Can I have a show of hands? But we KNOW these cases are frivolous, even though Cain refuses to cooperate in getting the details out. Because Politico.

Cain and even ordinarily sensible guys like Rush Limbaugh are claiming that Cain is the victim of racism over this, do we really think any WHITE Republican would have received this level of support in a similar circumstance? No. But the allegations are racist. Because Politico.

This is just ridiculous.

Unlike my colleague Leon, I don’t see where anyone but Herman Cain has a responsibility to be concerned about Cain’s future political viability. A career which I have to note has not extended to actually being elected to anything in the past. He has created this mess and it is incumbent upon him, alone, to get out of it. We have enough bored dilettantes running for office out there as is so I find the loss of one underwhelming.

Herman Cain is running for president. It has been reported, quite accurately, that he has been the subject of two sexual harassment settlements. Yes, we all know that this particular accusation has been abused but we also know that sexual harassment does take place. It is incumbent on Cain to come clean on the facts and circumstances and let the voters judge. If he doesn’t he deserves whatever treatment he gets.

Regardless of the actual facts in the case, Herman Cain’s total absence of honesty and integrity since Sunday should be a clue as to the character of this candidate. It also serves as a clue to the truth of the allegations.

This is not a case of letting “the liberal media” choose our candidates. This is a case of a man who wants to be president having over a decade to prepare a response to an obvious question and refusing to do so. And when he is confronted, rather than candor and truthfulness he engages in attacks, lies, and evasions. We’ve elected two men like that to the White House in the past two decades and in both cases we’ve found that their behavior in office is, unsurprisingly, the same as it is out of office.

There is no way under the sun this man gets my vote for any office at any time.