Overheard on CNN.com: Rough roads ahead for Cain's campaign
Herman Cain kicks off his presidential campaign with his wife, Gloria, at a May rally in Atlanta.
December 2nd, 2011
02:00 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Rough roads ahead for Cain's campaign

Editor's note: Overheard on CNN.com is a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

The comments section began to buzz after a story appeared about Herman Cain's plans to meet with his wife to discuss the future of his campaign. There's been a lot of chatter recently regarding the Republican presidential candidate's 13-year friendship with a woman named Ginger White.

Cain says he offered White financial assistance because she was in need. The majority of our commenters seemed convinced that Cain's friendship carried additional benefits. Many also said his campaign is doomed.

Cain to meet with wife amid affair claims, dropping poll numbers

There were a lot of commenters who tried to put the friendship in the context of their own lives. Many said they didn't find Cain's story believable and were baffled about his need to schedule a meeting with his wife. Some compared him to Newt Gingrich, who has also battled controversies over his personal life.

beowulfpk: " 'Yes, honey, I know I have been texting this woman at all hours of the day and supporting her financially, but I swear she is just a friend.' Anyone that believes that is a fool. The worst part about Cain is that he is a liar. If he had at least admitted partial fault to some of these allegations, he probably could get through this. Look at Newt. He cheated on his wife who was dying of cancer, and people still love him."

Several iReporters and commenters suggested that Cain drop out of the race, and there were also some who wanted him to stay.

Others noted that many politicians have dealt with allegations of affairs, including prominent presidents. Commenters wondered what motivates women to come forward and say they were involved with these men.

mysrom: "I don't understand the big deal. There are very few presidents who didn't have affairs (at least that I know of) and most were quite accepted. JFK, FDR and Clinton are the first to come to mind. Has anyone asked why these women all of a sudden came out of the woodwork? Cain should hang in there; Clinton got elected (twice) in the midst of sexual harassment and affair scandals."

Many readers indicated they weren't as concerned about the possibility of Cain having an affair as about attempts to cover up his behavior. Some saw him as hypocritical:

WolfAK: "For a man who founds his platform on making everyone accountable and doing their own work with no handouts, he seems to have handed out a bit himself to these women. Playing it hard and stern before then claiming he is soft and kindhearted just smacks of lies. Do I care if he had affairs? Not really. Payouts, cover-ups, denials in face of facts, hiding behind lawyer letters and agreements? That does not make any kind of candidate in my eyes."

In general, there was much cynicism expressed about politics.

Ocean26: "I don't care if you make a 'mistake' and cheat on your wife, but five different women and one who says it's been ongoing for 13 years confirms to me you have no morals or character and do not deserve the highest office in this land."

MrDystonia: "I disagree, Ocean26. His behavior qualifies him for elected office. After all, we've been electing lawyers to these positions for decades."

Commenters said Cain should have known these allegations would surface due to his high profile.

llardkent: "Were he not running for president, Cain's story would be a curiosity. But he is running for president, and his handling of the repercussions of women coming forward with accusations of impropriety is astonishing. He admits that he had a long-term relationship with a woman his wife didn't know about, in which he gave the woman money and gifts, but he wasn't physically intimate with her? If you have a long-term relationship with someone and give them money and gifts and your wife doesn't know about it, you are a cad regardless of the nature of your physical relationship. After everything else he is accused of, to admit to this, then suggest he is still a viable candidate is insane. He is toast. Is this an indicator of the quality of the men running this country, in politics and business? It seems every one of these guys, when the spotlight goes on them, have terrible narcissistic flaws - and these are the same guys who think they know better than us how we should live our lives. All that remains is for Cain to admit he is an adulterer, and proclaim that it is only because he loves his country so much."

CrimsonSky: "What amazes me the most is the arrogance of this guy, his ego and his stupidity. Didn't he think for a second that his life would be put under a microscope? And that all his extracurricular activities would be exposed to everyone, and that he would be judged according to his lifestyle? He is a habitual liar, a cheat and not a candidate for any job that I can think of. Pathetic!!"

A lot of our commenters referred to Gingrich's baggage, saying they thought Cain was getting too much scrutiny while the former House speaker wasn't getting enough. A few alluded to race as a possible explanation, while others rejected such theories:

MotTheHoople: "Why are people bearing down on Cain for having an affair? All the while embracing Newt? Newt also had an affair at the same time he was spearheading the impeachment of Clinton for having an affair. Which makes him a hypocrite. ... Why are people holding Cain up to a higher standard than Newt? Is it the skin color? Or what?"

dfwenigma: "The problem with Newtie is that his laundry has been aired so many times that people don't see the dirt in it anymore. That his party would even allow him to run shows the shame that typifies the modern GOP. Newt Gingrich is a dyed-in-the-wool hypocrite. He challenges liberals for committing the same peccadilloes he does and then cries foul at the liberal media. Believe me this is going to get foul and the other campaigns are going to make Gingrich go away. He's a nonentity in this election."

Now it's your turn to share your take. What lies ahead for Cain? Do you think he should quit? Join the conversation in the comments area below and in the latest stories on CNN.com. Share your thoughts on video via CNN iReport.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (220 Responses)
  1. DCE

    Hang it up Cain!

    December 2, 2011 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
  2. AlongTheWay

    You mean he hasn't quit yet? Nothing but bad after bad. Like Lohan. She's known now more for being bad....than her true career. Yup. Hang it up. Embarrassing and disgraceful actions and reactions. Certainly don't need the Secret Service watching over him. Certainly need to stop wasting time and Tax Payers' money.

    December 2, 2011 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Elaine Connelly

      I will stand with Herman Cain anyday over Obozo, Biden or any other democrat, since the democrats are the ones who wanted the slavery trade to continue. GET A CLUE, study history and then comment on the suitability of a candidate. Kennedy had numerous affairs, the only difference is that reporters use to have a sense of propriety and did not dish the dirt on the President. You seem all to eager to believe the MSM. Therefore I consider your opinion to mean diddly squat!

      December 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nodack

      Same to you. I will never vote for another Republican again. Their extramarital affairs aside.

      Fabricating evidence to go to war. Only caring about the top 2% only. No Universal Health Care. They doubled the debt. They destroyed the economy. FOX News dedicated to spreading fear and lies on behalf of big business.

      December 2, 2011 at 6:16 pm | Report abuse |
  3. cary lacayo

    NO!!! Quitting is exactly what those involved in this mess are waiting for from Cain...Facts are facts and seems like none of these women have shown any, except for some small potatoes...Fact is, someone from the other side of the isle or possibly from within the gop camp has it out for for Cain...They must think he is a threat to their future endeavors...I just want to see Obama go against Cain in a debate...It'll be like a prize fight pay per view thing and my moneys on Cain...

    Another thing, Newt's skeletons in the closet await him in the future and why isn't anyone bringing his 2 failed marriages caused by infidelity up for scrutiny???...Their just waiting to see how things work out with Cain...one guy at a time...politics at their finest, thanks to the media who runs things........................

    December 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Elaine Connelly

    DCE: You must be an Obama supporter. Did you think what Billy Bob Clinton did in the White House was acceptable? You are a demonrat. I will stand with Herman Cain anyday over Obozo, Biden or any other democrat, since the democrats are the ones who wanted the slavery trade to continue. GET A CLUE, study history and then comment on the suitability of a candidate. Kennedy had numerous affairs, the only difference is that reporters use to have a sense of propriety and did not dish the dirt on the President. You seem all to eager to believe the MSM. Therefore I consider your opinion to mean diddly squat!

    December 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • nancy

      What the HELL are you talking about? The "slave trade"? "demonrat"? "billy bob clinton"? I would suggest that you begin to try to raise your dialogue beyond such silly name calling and diatribe and try to articulate an actual point.

      December 2, 2011 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • dogboy

      But but but, they do it too!

      December 3, 2011 at 12:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Jambi

      I hate when folks start talking about history and take things out of context. You are absolutely correct to say the slave trade was supported by the 'Democratic' party at the time. The good southern churches did also– among others. The 'republican' was the party that helped to free the slaves. Since the New Deal under FDR and the 1964 civil act the parties switched roles and philosophy. Lincoln and Theodore R. would not recognized the republican party today and I don't think they would want to be apart of it. Another thing, I love when ignorant republicans echo Reagan's sentiment about being a young liberal and get older and be a conservative. This is exactly what happened to benito mussolini in the 1930's. History tells us to be wary of those fascists. Conservatives and fascist are like kissing cousins. I know most ignoramuses will disagree; however, check history and read alittle about the Spanish civil war in 1993-1936. BTW, I am foreigner to America . Congress needs term limit PERIOD

      December 3, 2011 at 5:01 am | Report abuse |
  5. Billy Davis

    If you have a graveyard full of dancing skeletons you shouldn't run for President if you really care about your family. I would never run for public office. Heck, I have midgets, twins and host of other skeletons in my closet and I OWN them.

    December 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jambi

      Ideally, you would make a good politician due to your honesty. No saint would dare take on the role of a politician. Like one wise man once said, " politicians are like a bunch of ripe bananas, they are yellow, they hang together, and not a straight one among them". THEY ALL HAVE FORKED TONGUE

      December 3, 2011 at 5:07 am | Report abuse |
  6. Carl Braun

    Absolutely NOT! It grows economy and no chance of getting the nomination. Sounds like WIN/WIN.

    December 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Kevin

    Poor Ol' Guy, He's obvioiusly being setup by all the other people running for office!!! YA RIGHT!!!!
    This guy needs to hop back into his pink caddi, lower the brim of his hat and cruise out of town quietly..

    December 2, 2011 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Conventgirl

      Cain's wife should kick the liar to the curb.

      December 3, 2011 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Gilligan


      Kick him to the curb....like Hillary did.

      December 3, 2011 at 7:09 am | Report abuse |
  8. the_dude

    I have never offered or received any financial assistance just because I was in need. Where do I find freinds like this????

    December 2, 2011 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jambi

      I think they are out there but I think there is a catch to it: you have to give a little to get a little - if you know what i mean. You just have to show them what you have to offer. If you are like me - with nothing to offer, then don't start trying to find one

      December 3, 2011 at 5:55 am | Report abuse |
  9. ljjm

    He should quit, not because of infidelity, but probably because of harassment issues. However, the main reason he should quite is that he is totally unqualified for the position and a puppet of the Koch brothers, who already wield enough influence in the political arena.

    December 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |

    The only thing he's doing right now is reducing support for another candidate. It's not the women–it's the policies. Stop invading his personal life and recognize that this man has no business being president because of ISSUES.

    December 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Alfredo

    Who cares! The guy is an Uncle Tom ! Hates Latinos ! All he knows is 999, to all of his questions!

    December 2, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • No Wonder

      And is it any wonder that they Hate Him Too!!

      December 3, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Kelly

    What is funny about this is that he says he has a big announcement to make on Saturday. Big for him perhaps, the rest of see is is not going anywhere.

    December 2, 2011 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Liza

    Yes, he should quit. And his new "Women for Cain" website is a desperate attempt to make him look like he really cares about women's issues. Please, is this guy serious?

    December 2, 2011 at 6:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Conventgirl

      In a word.........no.

      December 3, 2011 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Jambi

      I have to agree with ConventGirl. Hey ConventGirl, are you a nun? BTW - I heard that if one marries a nun he gets nun in the morning, nun in the evening, and nun at suppertime :-))

      December 3, 2011 at 6:01 am | Report abuse |
  14. Mark B.

    No way he should quit. These are allegations and heretofore, baseless. We KNOW Kennedy cheated, two Kennedys.
    We KNOW Clinton cheated. They served. Give me a break. You lefties don't get it both ways. He is feared.

    December 2, 2011 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ed

    If you were a white man named Bill Clinton we would just be hearing how your private life means nothing to public service, but sine you are a black man named Cain who is a conservative we see the lynch mob riding into town.

    December 2, 2011 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jambi

      Please tell me that you were not around during the 'Bimbo eruptions" of the 80's. If you were then either a liar or a right-wing ninny

      December 3, 2011 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
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