Letterman offers Cain his 9-9-9 plan
November 18th, 2011
08:32 AM ET
3 years ago

Letterman offers Cain his 9-9-9 plan

(CNN) - Leave it to one of the kings of late night comedy to press Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain on his "9-9-9" tax plan and offer up his own suggestion to the former pizza executive.

"You ought to get some sort of toll-free number," Letterman told Cain in an interview set to air Friday. "You dial 9-9-9, you get a free pizza."

Although the plan is "clever" and "fun," Letterman, host of CBS' "Late Show with David Letterman," told Cain: "You don't even know what it means."

Cain's response? "It works."

The candidate's tax plan, a pillar of his White House bid, proposes replacing the current tax system with a 9% corporate tax, 9% income tax and 9% national tax rate.

"Instead of a free pizza when you dial 9-9-9 you're going to be able to get a job, that's the whole point, OK?" Cain said. "I'm about creating jobs."

But Letterman countered that the economy may be "beyond solvability at this point," to which Cain jokingly responded, "Are you trying to talk me out of this? He's trying real hard to talk me out of this."


Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain
soundoff (169 Responses)
  1. hsiaobai

    How do yo usay No-No-No in German? 9-9-9

    November 18, 2011 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  2. Tomis

    the 666 plan wil only work to make the rich richer and the poor poorer. But that the republican motto isnt it.

    November 18, 2011 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  3. ObamaYoMama

    what happened with that price on Letterman's head from the Muslim brotherhood??? oh forgot, letterman's ratings were down

    November 18, 2011 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. TommiGI

    Cain can be a US presidetial candidate
    Cain cannot be a US president

    November 18, 2011 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  5. Fair is Fair

    "Thank-you once again for conceding defeat by attacking my character and not my facts. I've come to expect no less."
    -----–
    You call making an analogy of running a country to hiring a babysitter "facts"? Epic fail.

    November 18, 2011 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  6. FLIndependent

    I was listening to MSNBC on the radio today and they actually believe Cain could win the nomination as Repubs are looking for an "outsider". This is both funny and scary. Funny because I don't believe he can with the Presidency and Obama will slaughter him in debates but scary that there are many out there that will actually vote for the pretender! What is this country coming to??

    November 18, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  7. indyreader

    Cain is not a serious candidate. Not an *earnest* candidate, I guess would be clearer. He's stirring up publicity for himself, so his eventual book sells better, and so he can command higher fees in contracts for his radio show, etc. Trump-style, or Palin-style. That's all.

    November 18, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  8. FLIndependent

    "The 9-9-9 tax plan is brilliant even if it does bring about a national sales tax. The economy needs help from Washington, not political games. Obama has played games for 3 years so far. America lost. He has no new ideas. No hope."

    ______________________
    People like you are what worry most Americans. What games has Obama been playing? He has many new ideas but most haven't been able to come to fruition because of the Repubs/Tea Partiers either stopping them or watering them down. Please pay attention!

    November 18, 2011 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    m.browne wrote:
    Libs call conservatives racist......now thats a good one for the record books, and by the way......quite untrue....Libs look at yourselves for a change................
    ------------------
    Many liberals do make that charge. By the way, have you listened to your conservative base on talk radio lately? Have you looked around you at your rallies, conferences, and conventions lately? Diversity is seriously lacking in the right wing.

    If you want to know why, just listen to what is being said, just look at the posters being carried, and take a good look and listen at the policies being enacted. Ant-minority. Anti-women. Anti-youth. Anti-seniors. Pro-"Good Old Boy" all the way, which is why Herman Cain fits in so nicely. He's a "better black" than the majority of brain washed black Americans.

    November 18, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  10. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Herman Cain is trying out for "SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE"....sorry Mr. Cain....you're not funny enough!!!!!!!!!

    November 18, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  11. Democrat Class Warfare - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    scary that there are many out there that will actually vote for the pretender
    ===========================================================
    They voted for Obama in 2008 and some will again in 2012. The Great Pretender lives in the Whitehouse.

    November 18, 2011 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  12. charlie

    @Martin (a little off-topic): You mentioned 999 as the dial for emergency services in England. Same is true in Australia - but because they have so much American television programming (2 1/2 Men, really?!), they had to also include '911' as an emergency number in many areas as well.
    Our victory is complete! (only kidding, friends in Oz!)

    November 18, 2011 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  13. Democrat Class Warfare - Destroying the economy, destroying the country

    He has many new ideas but most haven't been able to come to fruition because of the Repubs/Tea Partiers either stopping them or watering them down.
    =================================================================================================
    All of his "new ideas" are left wing, class warfare based manure that has already been proven a failure. Even many Democrats won't line up behind him! THAT is how bad they are.

    November 18, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    m.brown wrote:
    If he said something like this about Obama when he was a candidate for President, Letterman would have been raked over the coals by the liberal news media, Jesse Jackson and all other black antagonists/anarchists.
    --------
    Letterman peeled the onion and revealed a black walnut.

    Obviously, you didn't actually see the show. Mr. Cain constantly says that America needs to develop a sense of humor, and David Letterman complied. Mr. Cain saw the appearance not as an opportunity to reveal a human side to himself, but as a campaign appearance. And, that difference is what made Mr. Cain look the way he did.

    November 18, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  15. carla

    Cain is just the next guy waiting to start his own reality show. Get the exposure, drop out, then go on t.v. The show will be called "9.9.9.".

    November 18, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  16. Four and The Door

    FLIndependent
    ...People like you are what worry most Americans. What games has Obama been playing?
    ______________________________________________________________________________________________
    Obama's whole approach to the economy has been a political game rather than honest attempts to listen to economists and support the things companies need to grow their businesses. But let me be very specific. The $450 billion "jobs" bill was created to fail. By that I mean his intention was only to put out there a bill so useless he could accuse the Republicans of not supporting it in his desparate 2012 campaign. Even that backfired when the Democratic Senate didn't even pass it. The games are not productive.

    November 18, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  17. carlos

    This ignorance cannot be the leader the world needs. I can't believe there are still people who support him after his lack of knowledge of foreign policy. He worked for the fed and crticized those reports about the economy collapse. But the most important thing is that he wouldn't survive a debate with Obama.
    I will vote Ron Paul.

    November 18, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  18. Claude Balls

    It's a testament to the sad state of American journalism that only late night comedians can ask genuine and relevant questions of a GOP candidate. Letterman and Stewart are today's Huntley and Brinkley. We're in deep trouble, my fellow Americans.

    November 18, 2011 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  19. FLIndependent

    @Dem Class Warfare -"All of his "new ideas" are left wing, class warfare based manure that has already been proven a failure. Even many Democrats won't line up behind him! THAT is how bad they are."

    ____________________________
    So, you're saying all the right wing, class warfare ideas that have been proven a failure are the way to go again. Americans will not make that mistake again in 2012! We've been there, done that. Obama has tried many times over to compromise and wanted the big cuts to take place when they were debating raising the debt ceiling. It's Congress that's the problem, not our President!

    November 18, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  20. Annie, Atlanta

    Did anyone else see the reporter ask Cain as he was leaving somewhere with his coat and hat on about Libya, and the man answered "999?" What kind of nonsense is this? He's making a mockery of our electoral process, and we're letting him.

    November 18, 2011 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  21. Bryan

    David Letterman might as well just overtly disclose the fact that he's a spokesman for liberals in America. Instead of having a conversation about a policy or stance, he automatically attacks it if it comes from a Republican. I don't agree with 9-9-9; it's too drastic a change from the current system, and any drastic change wreaks havoc, but Letterman could broach the subject by asking him why he thinks the plan would work instead of attacking it from the offset.

    November 18, 2011 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  22. GODZILLA1

    No one takes Cain seriously – he is just a filler for a vaudeville act, or minstrel show, and he doesn't even have to put on blackface.

    November 18, 2011 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  23. Rudy NYC

    Fair is Fair asked:
    You call making an analogy of running a country to hiring a babysitter "facts"? Epic fail.
    -------------
    No. I made an analogy of judging the character of a candidate to judging the character of a babysitter. I pointed out that the people need to use the same care and concern when evaluating the character of the candidates as they would a babysittter. After all, that candidate does have the future of kids in their hands, if elected.

    November 18, 2011 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  24. doug

    I have just noticed that evey pro-obama blogger repeats what the other pro-obamablogger blog & also that they never seem to have anything constructive to say in their arguments exept to spew out hate rhetoric about the party they hate & speaking about the party they love in such terms that makes it seem that they are in no way sinners at all & can do no wrong-same goes4the media everything these bloggers say about democrats is what i say about republicans & everything they say about republicans is what i say about democrats f.y.i. obama was never qualified to be the leader of our nation !

    November 18, 2011 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  25. FLIndependent

    @ FOUR – Obama's whole approach to the economy has been a political game rather than honest attempts to listen to economists and support the things companies need to grow their businesses. But let me be very specific. The $450 billion "jobs" bill was created to fail. By that I mean his intention was only to put out there a bill so useless he could accuse the Republicans of not supporting it in his desparate 2012 campaign. Even that backfired when the Democratic Senate didn't even pass it. The games are not productive.
    ____________________________

    Maybe you don't pay attention but parts of his jobs bill have been passed in a bipartisan vote so I guess it wasn't the big joke you make it out to be. At least the President had a jobs bill!!

    November 18, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
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