Cain charges some in black community of racism
October 11th, 2011
05:51 PM ET
7 years ago

Cain charges some in black community of racism

(CNN) – GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain said Tuesday that many liberal Democrats in the black community are "racist" for questioning his political ambitions as a black conservative Republican.

"A lot of these liberal, leftist folk in this country, that are black, they're more racist than the white people that they're claiming to be racist," Cain said Tuesday in a radio interview on the conservative Neal Boortz talk show.

Boortz interrupted Cain, saying he prefers the word "bigoted" to "racist."

"Ok, bigoted," Cain said. "How dare Herman Cain, first, run as a Republican? How dare Herman Cain be conservative? And how dare he move up in the polls, so that he just might challenge our beloved Obama? That's the problem they have."

Cain's comments came just hours before a New Hampshire debate, where Cain, who's surged to top tier status in the presidential race, is expected to take the heat from other candidates now that he's assumed front-runner status.

In the interview Tuesday, he also said that in a hypothetical matchup between he and President Barack Obama, there would "almost be no contest" and argued that he could talk about issues more in depth than Obama.

"He's never been part of the black experience in America," Cain said. "I can talk about that. I can talk about what it really meant to be 'po' before I was poor."

The Republican candidate came under fire recently for saying African Americans are generally on a level playing field with other Americans and sometimes use racism as an excuse for being poor.

"They weren't held back because of racism," Cain told CNN's "State of the Union" anchor Candy Crowley. "People sometimes hold themselves back because they want to use racism as an excuse for them not being able to achieve what they want to achieve."

His comments kicked off a wave of responses from high-profile African American leaders, who argue Cain is out of touch with reality.

"There are disparities in this country in every [socioeconomic] factor that we follow. In every aspect of our human endeavors in this country there is a racial disparity element that's a part of it. It's almost silly to respond to [Cain] because the evidence is so overwhelming," PBS host Tavis Smiley said in the interview with CNN anchor Suzanne Malveaux on Monday.

- CNN's Diana Ozemebhoya contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain
soundoff (614 Responses)
  1. OKTOGO77

    There are actually a substantial number of Americans out there who think this man should lead and represent this nation to the rest of the world? Yes, the economy and jobs situation is the number one concern at this time, but to lead THIS country, you need to know a little more than "9-9-9". I watched the debate last night – Herman Cain doesn't know anything other than 9-9-9 (which would never pass anyway).

    October 12, 2011 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  2. Ethernet

    Finally, some one who has the guts to speak the truth. To bad its not politicly correct to talk truth anymore. African Americans are way more racist than anyone else.

    October 12, 2011 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  3. Al-NY,NY

    Why shouldn't he be bitter and combative? He got his. to everyone else who might not have theirs...too bad. "Flavor of the week" is going to be gone in a month

    October 12, 2011 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  4. Rob

    Just a couple of quick questions regarding Cain's so-called economic brilliance. How well off are all of his former Godfather employees? Is that we want to be as a country?

    October 12, 2011 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  5. ED FL

    You know your in trouble whjen Bachmann makes you look silly Cains pizza 999 compared to Bachmann's satanic response of 666 and these folks want to become President. They could not be President of the PTA when no one else wants it.

    October 12, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  6. Katz

    I fully agree with Mr. Cain. It's a shame that the Dems and Libs have the blacks bamboozled to think that they actually have their best interest at hand. This is a black man who does not swing the way dems and libs do so now they are going after him! All you tearing him down saying color doesn't matter are a bunch of liars. Most blacks came out in records to vote for Obozo because he was 1/2 black! Blacks just don't like being told, what Obama has already said. Get those slippers off and do something. Stop acting like your owed something. I always hear blacks say, "Well what is Obama going to do for the blacks". That is not looking to get a president in for all americans! That's racist!

    October 12, 2011 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  7. John

    Blacks are the only people I ever hear that are concerned about race, Cain included. I personally don't care at all if you're black, or that you care that you're black, or want me to care that you're black. I might change my mind if you can tell me why I should care, rather than just telling me I should care.

    October 12, 2011 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  8. ED FL

    Perry and Cain would make a good DUO of what who ventures a guess.

    October 12, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  9. New Age Independent

    @bicyclist1977 "Herman Cain is the only racist with an accepted national platform right now. It is so sad that he is a black man. He is being used. "

    It's a pity that you cannot handle the truth when it's presented before you. As a father of a mixed race family I see it all the time, and I refuse to let my children wallow in their self pity and make excuses. Yes, it's a tough world and others have it easier. But it's based on economics more than race. And the gap there is massive. I've experienced much of the same that Cain has described. To call him racist, really only shows how racist you are.

    October 12, 2011 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  10. SCAtheist

    If 9-9-9 got implemented jobs wouldn't matter. You'ld have to make 50k to eat.

    October 12, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  11. dnick47

    Racism is not nor everhas been proprietary with anyone race, so Cain's commentsare in order; however, most blacks are not racist. In fact its been my experience that African-Americans are less racist then white people.

    October 12, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  12. Jomm

    Oh please, AL sharpton and Jesse Jackson does NOt keep racism alive and profit from it. Al and Jesse DOES call racism out and some folks do not like it because they want to continue their racism and trying to use that "reverse racism: excuse. Give me a break. Hate on Al and Jesse all you want but they also speak the truth.

    October 12, 2011 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  13. boocat

    I'd tell Herman Cain – you reap what you sow....

    October 12, 2011 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  14. Jessica

    "He's never been part of the black experience in America," Cain said. "I can talk about that. I can talk about what it really meant to be 'po' before I was poor."

    October 12, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  15. ART

    Wow what an embarrassment to humanity this moron is. He literally has no shame, and I refuse to beleive he is actually black, he must be wearing a mask.

    October 12, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  16. stacy100

    I totally agree with Mr. Cain. He doesn't sound like a modern day; give me everything you got, it's not my fault, black man, and the liberal blacks cannot stand him. I wonder how he likes being consider a racist by his on race?? Stay strong Mr. Cain!! I wasn't going to vote for you, but you are starting to sound like the one man (black or white0 that really understands what's going on.

    Cain 2012

    October 12, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  17. Rich

    Sounds like he is trying to say he is better than the rest of the black folk here in the US. Sounds like he is trying to make himself more appealing to the rich white republicans, who are only using him as a puppet to take down Obama.... if they can.

    October 12, 2011 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  18. Publius Novus

    Ahh yes. The Race Card is finally played.

    October 12, 2011 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  19. Patrick

    What really gets me is that he's really a very brilliant man. So I know that either he's designing these statements to sway the large population of idiots of his party or he's completely nuts.

    October 12, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  20. Patrick

    It should be a simple matter for somone as smart as Cain to see that not every black person will go from a janitor to a CEO, and not every black person is racist. He should also see that racism does exist, holds people back every day in various ways, and needs to be addressed if only for the sake of fairness.

    October 12, 2011 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  21. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    Now I can see why Bill O'Reilly loves this guy! He is Bill with black skin! The real problem is even though he remembers what it was to be "po", he has forgotten that he had opportunities that others didn't. I agree he didn't get any handout, but he did get a couple of hands up to help him along. That is what he has forgotten. Some folks need a little help to get started, especially when you start out with nothing.

    His 9-9-9 plan is slammed by the left for being a burden on the poor, he is slammed on the right as bringing in too much money into the Federal Government, he is slammed by people who actually pay attention to tax plans and federal revenue as not bringing sufficient funds to run the government. I still miss Steve Forbes flat 15% plan. That was probably the most workable of all.

    As to the rest, yes he has experience at creating jobs, if you call minimum-wage, no-benefit, service-industry stuff "jobs". I worked one of those in the past, and it wasn't worth it. Besides that, his pizza makes "Domino's" and "Pizza Hut" taste good.

    October 12, 2011 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  22. Alison

    The fact that this guy is the front runner of the Republican side of the race now says a lot. He saying poor black people are poor because they choose to use racism as an excuse. I think it's safe to say he thinks that all people are poor because they choose to be, if that's the case. Does this sound like the type of president that will be concerned about creating jobs? Not if you ask me!

    October 12, 2011 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  23. Mike in SA

    Some of the most racist people I know personally and some I know from TV/Radio (hey Rev's Sharpton and Jackson!) are Black. Truth hurts. Are there racist Whites our there? Yep...and racists from every other walk of life too. Deal with it, if you can't admit the racism in your own ranks, you are part of the problem and not part of the solution.

    October 12, 2011 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  24. W L Jones

    All the black people who had had been here on this land for hundred thousand years mix with those broad over here as slave from every nix and coner of Africa as well those from all over south america from many nation an tribe. We have race problem in one own family. Bless.

    October 12, 2011 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  25. acura2010

    Herman Cain, you still won't win!

    October 12, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
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