From Yahoo news
Plagued by allegations of sexual harassment and marriage infidelity, businessman Herman Cain announced Saturday that he is officially suspending his campaign for president of the United States.
"As of today, with a lot of prayer and soul searching, I am suspending my presidential campaign," Cain said at what was supposed to be new campaign headquarters in his hometown of Atlanta. "I am disappointed that it came to this point that we had to make this decision."
But he added, "Before you get discouraged, today I want to describe Plan B. ... I am not going away. I will continue to be a voice for the people." With that, he unveiled the headquarters of his new website, TheCainSolutions.com.
Cain, one of the first Republican candidates to launch his campaign for the White House last spring, spent most of his run as an obscure, low-polling candidate that was a hit at tea party rallies. But as the Republican field took shape, and it became clear that high-profile party hopefuls like Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie would not enter the race, Republicans seemed willing to give any of the candidates a fair shake
I don't know if Cain's guilty or not. I am suspicious of the claims to a degree because every single one of them was from his time at National Restaurant Association. Nothing was from his time at Godfather's or Pillsbury or his talk radio show. Maybe he was guilty. Maybe he was guilty only of pissing off some people. The harassment claims have just as much credence as Larry Sinclair's claim about being in the back seat with Obama snorting coke and doing other things (why doesn't the tabloid 'mainstream' leftist media give as much time to that?). They aren't proven and the credibility is in question. Is it possible? Yes. Likely? I'm skeptical. The affair? I still don't know, although that's more likely to be either proved or disproved if there was a 13 year claim. Politics is a nasty business at times. As the unofficial definition of politics from polysci 101 goes. "Politics is who gets what, when, and how." Politics is about power.
Whatever the case is, Cain is out. If you want to ruin a campaign, get some "friend of the program" to hire 5 or 6 women (or men if it is a woman candidate) at different times who have at least all crossed paths with a candidate to claim harassment or an affair. Have them set up news conferences. It doesn't matter if it is true. It can all be BS. In the court of public opinion, when there is multiple accusers, we are guilty till proven innocent. People believe there can't be a semi-coordinated attack from multiple people. They think "When there smoke, there's fire." If I had $100,000 (maybe less) - chump change in a presidential race, to spend on political black-ops, that I didn't have to report, I could set something like this up with any sort of time if I want to go down that road. It's not hard. All I'd need is a good scouting report to find the right targets. $20,000 each can buy a lot, and it doesn't even have to be a direct payment, or something all at once.
Dirty tricks are nothing new. It's a staple of Chicago style politics. Obama won his senate race by getting Jack Ryan (who had young kids) off the ballot because he didn't want his divorce file unsealed. Certain details sealed he didn't want out there. Neither did his ex-wife for that matter. It was Obama's cronies and his media allies.
It's a dirty business, and all of us involved at any level have to be ready for it.
How does Cain dropping out effect things? I don't know. This election has been crazy so far. I had Newt Gingrich as one of the big losers early on because of the straw poll results in Iowa. He's now the possible frontrunner. For now. That could change. I don't see anything for sure at least until Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina make their decisions.
My wild guess for now.
Newt Gingrich. I would not be surprised if Cain backs Newt. They are friends, or at least were until the campaign. If there isn't some falling out that we don't know about, Newt may benefit from this.
Jon Huntsman. If Newt falters when his past comes back, then who?
Could go either way - Romney. At first glance, one could thing this narrows down the "anyone but Mitt" vote. Possible. Another school of thought thinks with Romney avoiding some of the news that it helps him. Some think he's the most electable. I disagree for a lot of reasons, but Cain's dropping could benefit him that way.
As far as the effects regarding Bachmann, Paul, and Perry, I don't see a lot of changes although some may give them a second look. Bachmann and Perry collapsed and have not recovered. Paul will get his share no matter what, but has a problem breaking the 10% ceiling.
We'll see what happens over the next month. I think I'm going to need to take a long shower after primary day (and the general). I had a bad feeling about this really since Mitch Daniels decided he wasn't running, compounded with Pawlenty dropping out after Iowa.