Cain gives smoking ad a rave
October 27th, 2011
09:35 AM ET
7 years ago

Cain gives smoking ad a rave

(CNN) – Herman Cain described a recent web video from his presidential campaign that shows his chief of staff smoking a cigarette as “hilarious.”

The Republican candidate said the video is the latest example of his campaign sayings that include "Let Herman be Herman" and "Let Mark be Mark," a reference to his top adviser Mark Block.

"Mark happens to be a smoker," Cain said Wednesday on Fox News. "He knows it's a bad habit, but he smokes, and so we weren't trying to send any subliminal message whatsoever."

Monday's campaign video, which quickly gained traction, showed Block encouraging voters to back Cain before a shot of him exhaling cigarette smoke. On Tuesday, Block, who also serves as chief operating officer of Friends of Herman Cain, told CNN "America needs to get a sense of humor."

And the former Godfather's Pizza CEO stood by his man.

"We were in Vegas and we knew we wanted to put something new out there," Cain said. "I trusted Mark Block, which I still do and I thought he did a great job with the ad."

- CNN Senior Producer Kevin Bohn contributed to this report.

Also see:

Perry may pass on debates

Gingrich builds staff in New Hampshire

Bachmann files to run in New Hampshire

Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Herman Cain
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. ST

    This 999 man is totally idiot. You let a smoker be a smoker, a thief be a thief, a liar be a liar and advertise it??? What message is this smoker sending to young kids? We teach our kids good habits and not bad ones Mr. Herb.

    October 27, 2011 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  2. yuri

    Herman has humor on his side-or so he hays. One is tempted to think that this guy is hell-bent on projecting his image thru unconventional methods-a smoking man, for instance. That will send a strong signal, in his hubris-filled heart, to the teen agers who, at the drop a hat, will follow suit and start, perhaps, thinking about smoking. All politics is Machiavellian.

    October 27, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  3. Rick McDaniel

    That's known as budget marketing........the cost of producing that ad, was absolutely minimal. The main cost will be the air time to run it.

    Effectiveness? That's absolutely lacking for anything more than name recognition.

    October 27, 2011 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  4. Tony in Maine

    After stint as CEO of a pizza company, Cain was a lobbyist. He represented, among others, the merchants of death aka the tobacco companies. I suspect he got some cash for the "placement" in one of his ads. Using the weasel rationale, it will not be reported as a campaign donation.

    October 27, 2011 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  5. Liz the First

    The smoking is bad enough. but that sidelong smile from Cain at the end is just plain creepy. he looks like he's trying to pick up some chick in a bar instead of votes. i can just hear him saying, 'hey, baby, you come here often?' this guy is as not suited to be leader of the free world as it gets. how many red flags need to go up before the voters come to their senses about not only him, but the whole retuhg field?

    October 27, 2011 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  6. Larry L

    Smoking fits well with the Republican plans to reduce Medicare and Social Security benefits. If people will die sooner they won't need the support as long! Too bad the math doesn't work...

    Unfortunately, the long treatment period is enormously expensive and the death slow and painful. Typically, In the final days the person desperately gasps for air, with the sound of liquid filling the lungs, and a horrible, panicked look on their face as they slowly drown in their own fluids. They waste away until mercifully, some critical organ slowly destroyed by the disease, ceases to function and death occurs. It's certainly an ugly way to die and an unusual choice for another of Mr. Cains "jokes".

    Mr. Cain is a cancer survivor who jokes about smoking and used this moronic act to get attention. He isn't smart or compassionate enough to do anything beyond running a company that makes bad pizzas.

    October 27, 2011 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  7. mdn

    Cain would be a great president if we were looking for a clown who is not serious about anything American.

    October 27, 2011 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  8. bighulawood

    It's not so much the smoker in the add that creeps me out. It's that long slow smile Cain delivers at the close. IT reminds me of one of Damien's "that'll teach ya" looks after he's made someone's head explode.

    October 27, 2011 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  9. morris wise

    The nation needs a leader with "Horse Sense" and Cain is that guy. He never needs a speech written by others, because he speaks from the wisdom of his earthly intuition. Cain might say two things that are wrong, but the one thing that is right makes him get my vote.

    October 27, 2011 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  10. Charmaine

    This whole Republican debates is a media circus!I do not know if they are doing it to be funny but it sure makes them look stupid! Herman Cain "smokin" ad is a comedy hour skit and all the late night shows are taking a jab at i!t They are making it even more funnier.And what is up with Herman Cain Always wearing a yellow tie? Is that a good luck piece?Hmmm.

    October 27, 2011 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  11. v_mag

    Let Herman be Herman. But for god's sake, don't let him be president!

    October 27, 2011 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
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