New York (CNN) - While speaking to reporters outside of a meeting with Donald Trump on Monday, Republican presidential contender Herman Cain dialed back his criticism of Rick Perry over his family's use of a hunting camp named "Niggerhead."
"I really don't care about that word. They painted over it," he said, referring to a sign painted on a rock at the property the Texas Governor once leased. The Washington Post first reported Sunday that the slur appeared on the hunting grounds' gated entrance.
The matter "doesn't bother me at all," Cain added, emphasizing that he was satisfied by Perry's explanation of it and that he was "not playing the race card. I am not attacking Gov. Perry." The Perry camp has maintained that aspects of the Washington Post's report were "incorrect" and that the sign was painted over long ago.
Cain's comments Monday mark something of a reversal. Yesterday he called the Perry property's name "very insensitive" in an appearance on ABC's "This Week."
He repeatedly referred to the issue as a distraction as he steered his remarks toward his "999 Plan," which calls for a business flat tax, an individual flat tax and a national sales tax of 9%.
After emerging from his meeting with Trump, Cain said the two had hit it off. "I very much enjoyed it," the former Godfather's Pizza CEO said of the tete-a-tete, adding that he felt a kinship with Trump over the "fact that we're both businessmen."
The two discussed Cain's 999 Plan and the impact of Chinese economic policy on the United States, Cain said. Trump did not speak to reporters immediately following the meeting.
Stopping by Trump Tower has become de rigueur for Republican presidential candidates. Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and Perry paid previous visits to the reality TV personality and real estate mogul, who himself weighed a bid for the Republican nomination earlier this year.