ONE: Someday his prince will come…
Having taken some time off after a painful cycling accident, I return, Van Winkley, to a dramatically changed world. Mere weeks from the beginning of primary season, the cloddish Newt Gingrich seems poised to lead the Republican field, while Herman Cain’s stock drops a little further every time he opens his mouth, and even further every time a woman does.
Cain’s alleged 13-year extramarital affair with Ginger White seems at last to have turned off one of his most ardent sycophants, Erick Erickson, who posted this at RedState on Tuesday:
This time, to his credit, Herman Cain told Wolf Blitzer he would wait until the story ran and all the facts were out there. It was a wise thing to do. But while Herman was on CNN saying that, his attorney issued his statement that all but admitted there’s a there there.
Herman Cain believed he could be President of the United States. For a time, I believed Herman Cain could be President of the United States. But I don’t know that much of Herman’s staff ever really thought he could. Too many never seemed in it to win it. They seemed in it to make some money off Herman’s run and a name for themselves. Well, they’ve sure made a name for themselves — “incompetent.”
Erickson’s bitterly elegiac tone stands in sad (and by “sad” I mean deep-down funny) contrast to his mash note – uh, I mean column, of November 10:
I still believe you can win the Republican nomination.
I still believe you can beat Barack Obama.
I still believe you can be one of the most inspiring Presidents since Ronald Reagan.
The Herman Cain I know would not and could not do what you are accused of.
Poor Erick might want to persuade the Herman Cain he knows to pursue the nomination, then, since the Herman Cain who is actually running appears to have a proclivity for sexual harassment, sexual assault, and adultery. In what passes for Erickson’s mind, though, the problem is somehow Cain’s staff. Actually, that’s not entirely surprising spin, since Erickson openly admits that he’s beholden to Cain:
I owe you a good bit of my present career in radio. You leaving opened the door for me.
Gee, Erick, when Cain slams the door on his candidacy, maybe you can take over his campaign! After all, you’re no more ignorant, unqualified and clueless than the rest of the field. Well, not much, anyway. But of course, you’re already a very busy guy. Your Cain-sparked career in radio, your irksome gig on CNN, and your roach-infested website all indicate that maybe the world I returned to this week is exactly the same one I left, absurd, inexplicable, unjust, random, outrageous, and endlessly entertaining.
Snark (mostly) aside, I share Erickson’s glumness about Cain’s fading fortunes. While his opponents offer all kinds of goofball quotes, cheeseball pandering and slimeball behavior of their own, nobody puts it all together and brings it like Herman Cain. Here’s a little tapas selection for you:
Chewing the fat with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Asked if he agrees with the president on Libya, Cain looks up and says, “OK, Libya.” He then pauses for a moment.
“President Obama supported the uprising, correct?” he asks, speaking carefully. “President Obama called for the removal of Qaddafi – just want to make sure we’re talking about the same thing before I say yes I agree, or no I didn’t agree. I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason – nope, that’s a different one.”
Cain then pauses for about five seconds.
“I gotta go back and see – um, I got all this stuff twirling around in my head,” he says. “Specifically, what are you asking me. Did I agree or not disagree with Obama?”
Chewing the pizza with GQ:
Chris Heath: What can you tell about a man by the type of pizza that he likes?
Herman Cain: [repeats the question aloud, then pauses for a long moment] The more toppings a man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is.
Chris Heath: Why is that?
Herman Cain: Because the more manly man is not afraid of abundance. [laughs]
Devin Gordon: Is that purely a meat question?
Herman Cain: A manly man don’t want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza.
Chewing the croqueta in Miami:
During a stop at the famous Versailles Restaurant in Little Havana, Cain drank a coffee and ate some croquetas.
“How do you say ‘delicious’ in Cuban?” he asked.
While he waited in vain for a Cuban-speaking person to enlighten him, he discussed the shocking way he’s treated:
“I’m often criticized … criticized about the fact that I don’t know this and I don’t know that, and I don’t know that and I don’t know this,” he told the crowd.
Chewing Henry Kissinger’s war criminal ass:
Accomplished and controversial former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is known as a practitioner of realpolitik, but GOP contender Herman Cain says his offer to give him his old job back was a nothing more than a real joke.
“Dr. Kissinger turned my offer down to be [S]ecretary of [S]tate…”
When asked by reporters later Tuesday if he had really offered Kissinger a job, Cain denied it and said he was only kidding.”
Oh, and Cain’s campaign manager, Mark “Butt Man” Block enjoyed that confab too:
After the Kissinger meeting, Cain’s campaign manager Mark Block told the National Review that Kissinger complimented a web video in which Block is seen smoking a cigarette. The ad became a viral internet sensation.
“Halfway through Mr. Cain’s conversation, Doctor Kissinger turns and points to me and says, ‘That smoking thing you did was brilliant.’ I sat there thinking, Dr. Henry Kissinger just said something I did was brilliant,” Block said. “We all got a good chuckle.”
And despite my bruised ribs, I got a good chuckle myself when I ran across this item:
Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain is now being protected by the U.S. Secret Service…
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, in consultations with congressional leaders, authorized Secret Service protection for Cain at the request of his campaign, the agency’s spokesman Ed Donovan said…
The Washington Post quoted Cain spokesman J.D. Gordon as saying the protection was requested after the newspaper’s report Thursday detailing physical skirmishes involving journalists covering the campaign…
Cain is the first Republican in the 2012 presidential race to receive Secret Service protection.
Just how the Secret Service goes about protecting a candidate from his own mouth, I do not know, but of course they’re called “secret” for a reason. Continue reading Take Five (If Pizzas Were Horses edition)