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. Solitaire

    I don't think there is a democrat or progressive on this board that wouldn't love to see Cain as the GOP nominee. But watching him spend his money on a failed campaign is fun too.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Quid Malmborg in Plano TX

      Cain as the GOP candidate would ensure a second term for President Obama. I'm all in favor of it.

      December 3, 2011 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
  2. Space cowboy

    This guys in a limbo now hes done a ginger cool she sounds hot id like to see his wife i wonder what she looks like

    December 3, 2011 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Boosh

      With guys like that it doesn't matter what his wife looks like. They will cheat and lie their asses off regardless.

      December 3, 2011 at 1:39 am | Report abuse |
  3. Lwg

    I wonder if he has tried a man before? Hes been caught with women, the men may not come out against him, with that midget didget he is packing. Maybe all these women are complaining about his SPS syndrome(small pen+s syndrom)

    December 3, 2011 at 1:41 am | Report abuse |
  4. Lwg

    To boosh, id take care of his wife for him in the sack, just to satisfy my curosity, you know that most black men wont go south on there women, so that makes it even better for me!!!!!!

    December 3, 2011 at 1:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Disguisted

      @Lwg – that is totally not true (I'm a black woman who has only dated black men – trust me they head south very WELL).

      December 3, 2011 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  5. Ya know what?

    Elaine Connelly:
    Bill Clinton did more for this country than Herman Cain did for Godfather's...therefore, your opinion is flawed, and completely stupid!

    December 3, 2011 at 2:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Gilligan

      and, and, and Clinton is a democrat.

      So there!

      December 3, 2011 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |
  6. Maltese Falcon

    It would be great if the CNN Editorial committee for marriage conformity could publicly state their policy on adultery.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  7. Ya know what?

    Oh, bullsh!t. Race has nothing to do with it, and you know it. Cain stands for nothing more than what his puppet masters Koch says he stands for.
    He is a non-issue; a man who hasn't been anything more than a Godfather's Pizza has been...infidelity CAN be forgiven if he stands for something more than a GOP token.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:33 am | Report abuse |
  8. Maltese Falcon

    We need to find out who's behind the marriage conformity movement. Name names. First on the list would be Nixon. Second – Ward Cleaver, the most boring character on Amerikan television.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:36 am | Report abuse |
  9. Ya know what?

    The worst thing for trying to make a point is spelling American "Amerikan", as if you were living on a planet that thought using a "k" instead of a "c" is "kool". It's. not, unless you're from the Planet Of The Apes. Then it's normal.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Gilligan


      December 3, 2011 at 7:20 am | Report abuse |
  10. Maltese Falcon

    I do not know what's ahead for Mr Cain. Hope he ignores the Anti-Adultery lynch mob.
    I do know what's ahead for the Amerikan people and their TV stations and news publications. A boring dull conformity and a complete lack of any romantic inclination, but plenty of vicious retribution for foreign countries who refuse to go along with the Amerikan trend towards second-rate vapidity.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:47 am | Report abuse |
  11. Ya know what?

    I do know that there's not a lot of future for idiots who misspell Amerikan. That's the height of disrespect.

    December 3, 2011 at 2:54 am | Report abuse |

    Does it matter if he quits? He'll never beat Obama anyway!!!!!! Obama 2012

    December 3, 2011 at 3:13 am | Report abuse |
  13. ANDREW

    Fool me once, shame on, shame on you. Fool me - you can't get fooled again!
    3 Charges from 3 different women, common, only person your fooling now is Yourself and those that Follow you Cain!

    December 3, 2011 at 3:44 am | Report abuse |
  14. Michael Dominici

    As a liberal Democrat and Obama supporter I loves me some Herman Cain. Actually, I love all the Republican candidates. Each of the major candidates have taken turns at the top of the polls, effectively dividing up their supporters money, to say nothing of how incredibly embarrassing each one has turned out to be so vividly. I think it's hilarious that the current front runners are the tired wet noodles Mitt and Newt, two guaranteed losers. What REALLY demonstrates how pathetic this bunch is though is that should Sarah Palin enter now, she'd probably dominate and secure the nomination. Good times! And good riddance! FOUR MORE YEARS! FOUR MORE YEARS!

    December 3, 2011 at 3:54 am | Report abuse |
  15. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ Scott Knuckles:
    That was a clever question, but you expected a knee-jerk reaction. You won't get your expected reaction from everybody.
    The operative difference between Clinton and Cain is that, at the time of Clinton's indiscretion, Clinton was the President of the United States of America.
    Right now, Cain is zip.
    Rich zip, but zip.

    December 3, 2011 at 4:15 am | Report abuse |
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