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. stan

    please let Mr. Cain stay in the race. It will make such a "no brainer" in the Presidential race. That being said, it should be a "no brainer" with all the "G.O.P." hopefuls at this time. If people think Obama is not assertive enough, let them compare to Mitt( what do you want me to say now?)Romney.
    Of course it is hard to make decisions when the populace is more interested in Dancing with the Stars, texting or on Facebook. My choice being Criminal Minds.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Richard Entz

    I could tell he was lying every time he spoke about one of these affairs. Then shortly after that he starts changing the story to fit his needs. For a man who sings gospel songs he seems like a real two-faced pig. I feel sorry for his poor wife who said recently: "That doesn't sound like my Herman". She obviously doesn't know what he is all about after all of these years. The moral of the story is that if you get money from Herman Cain, he is definitely going to be expecting something in return for his investment. When Herman said two days ago: " I am a kind and giving person" – that simply is a lie. He is a very controlling and manipulative liar who gets what he wants when he wants it. He knew every single detail of every affair that was addressed. Who knows how many other affairs he has had that we don't even know about? For him to continue to lie at this late date and portray himself as a kind and giving person is totally ridiculous. At least this all came out before he was able to be elected as President which is the only good thing about this mess!

    December 3, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Steve

    No one cares

    December 3, 2011 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ED FL

    As an 82 yr old American retiredmilitayr man I have been through many political adventures . Mr cain is just another one and next year their will more than likely be another Mr Cain again. This is what makes America so great , we have the freedom to have many Cains.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Ryan

    Stay in the race Mr. Cain. Then, during the Presiential debates, he can ask the moderator/press/hypocrites about the pass that they gave Clinton.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • alice58

      u can not be serious - the pass that clinton got? clinton got NO pass - his crap was all out there - it's that clinton was able to still appeal to people and poppa bush was an awful candidate.... and bill clinton was like 3 terms ago - GET OVER IT!!!

      December 3, 2011 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  6. sjsthriller

    Yes, Cain should quit. His poll numbers are near zero. No, Foreign policy experience. Jon Huntsman has the best chance of winning presidency in 2012. He's a great talent with tons of experience, both managing major State (Utah), and Foreign Policy (Ambassador Twice). Plus, he's a true conservative. Jon Huntsman is not a counterfeit conservative. Jon2012

    December 3, 2011 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Joan Kensington

    Herman Cain is an arrogant loud mouth not saying anything. People we need to wake up.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Percy

    Never had a chance from the beginning ,totally unqualified and besides we don't need another fox in the WH preying on the interns 😉

    December 3, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Frank Rizzo

    The reality is and was that Herman Cain never imaged he would do so well the republican tea party wacko's in fact he mange to sell thousands more copies of his book while traveling the country. He damage the GOP and any real chance of taking back the white house in 2012, the pool of candidates that remain are a joke to the GOP brand and the Nation.

    President Obama will get a second term thanks to the likes of Cain and Newt and of course the other wackos that remain. The American People can not and will trust the GOP at least not this around lol.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mary Davis

    Dear Mr. Cain, Your wife is a lovely woman. You are disgracing her every time another woman reveals your affair. The numbers
    indicate that something did happen along the way. You have hurt the one person who has loved you the most, your wife. Be
    open and honest with your wife, seek spiritual counseling. By being honest with your wife...............the healing can begin and she can decide what she wants. Seek God. Only "HE" knows the answer to what is the best for the both of you. Our prayers and thoughts are with your family. God Bless!

    December 3, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  11. rags&riches

    He cheated, he didn't cheat. He had an affair with a woman for 13 years, blah blah blah. How about we focus more on what's at hand! How about we focus on each candidate's views on everything? Cain will either be a liar, or a victim – so why are we so quick to judge. We, the people, are lied to every day. We are told that a plan is made to cut the deficit, and yet, nothing is being done. We elect these people into office, and they lie and do away with the country's money like they don't care. All I am saying, let's focus on the views of each political candidate first before we judge someone's life away. "Why does he view 'such and such' this way?" "What made him flip his views on this issue?" "Does his/her view appeal to me?" "Will he/she be a good candidate for this country?" Ask yourselves what is more important at hand. Clinton cheated, but he did a good job with the country.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Silent Majority


    One can only hope you are dropping out. If so, I am gonna celebrate. Shame on you for making it my fault that I am unemployed. It is not. You lost the election the day you said this:


    I did everything require of me to find a job and still no luck. Shame on you for making statements about the unemployed when so many of us lost jobs through no fault of our own. If you are dropping out, you are doing everyone (including yourself) a favor. If you are unable to empathize or understand the plight of the unemployed, OWS, or the educated and indentured class, you have no business running for the highest office in the land.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jean

    Enough of the Cain Comedy.! He is a joke.

    December 3, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  14. A Tyler

    I'm exhausted just listening to that load of bull!

    December 3, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Grigory Dashevsky

    Love is not free!...........

    December 3, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
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