Urbandale, Iowa (CNN) - Staff and supporters at Herman Cain's Iowa headquarters shared tears, hugs and overall fond memories of a candidate they say they'll continue to support in whatever his next venture may be.
"Without a doubt," Iowa communications director Lisa Lockwood said when asked if she'll continue to fight for him if there is a plan B for Cain, who announced Saturday that he is suspending his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Lockwood and a handful of volunteers sat in front of a laptop to watch a live stream of their candidate as he made the announcement that he'd be suspending his campaign.
"I think he's an awesome man and I think he would have been an awesome president. I still hold out hope that one day he will," Lockwood said.
But amidst the sadness and hope for the future were feelings of frustration toward members of the press over the coverage of sexual harassment allegations against Cain.
"I don't recognize my industry anymore," Lockwood said. "I was taught objectivity, accuracy, fairness, balance. I don't see that happening."
"Where's the investigation behind who [these accusers] are?" she said.
Asked whether she believes any of the allegations are true, Lockwood said she "wouldn't speculate" but that she "believes in him."
"I'm not judge or jury. It doesn't matter to me whether it's true or not."
Volunteer Patti Spencer Burdette of Des Moines and her son Thom Moore are staunch supporters who've devoted a significant portion of the past year to Cain's campaign. When they heard him say the word "suspend," their hearts sank.
"I don't mess with things unless I'm really going to invest my whole self," said Spencer Burdette. "And now what I've invested in has broken down in a way that I'd never ever expected. So yeah, I'm upset. I'm disappointed, a little heartbroken."
Her son echoed those feelings.
"I'm not happy," Moore said. "I feel like I've lost my second best friend. When I lost my best friend I lost all control of any capacity that I had, and it's taking everything in me not to fall apart."
Moore said he's never been one to actively participate in politics, but when he met Cain that all changed.
"This is the one time that I've actually cared."
The mother and son pair came to the offices shortly after the speech ended because they said they just had to find out if it's really over.
Spencer Burdette was most upset when discussing why she thinks the campaign ultimately failed.
"I'm not angry at him," she began, before turning to the media gathered around her. "Present company included or excluded, you guys know what you've been doing."
"You're supposed to have facts when you report something, and I just don't think that any media anywhere has taken facts and then fact-checked them before they reported them. That's what I'm angry about. It's just taken a good man and his family down."
"The very good are often the target of the very evil, and I think that's all this is."
This week, Ginger White, an Atlanta woman, told the news media that she and Cain engaged in an on-and-off affair for more than 13 years. She described the affair as "very casual." Cain told the Union Leader newspaper in New Hampshire this week that he repeatedly gave White money to help her with "month-to-month bills and expenses." But he denied the relationship was sexual, as White contends.
Two women - Sharon Bialek and Karen Kraushaar - previously accused Cain of sexually harassing them in the 1990s while he was head of the National Restaurant Association. Two other women also have said Cain sexually harassed them while they worked at the association, but they have declined to be identified.
Spencer Burdette said she believes the accusers are lying and that she feels sorry for what he and his wife have gone through.
Asked if she had an opinion about the fact that Cain did not disclose his relationship with White until after he revealed it to the media, Spencer Burdette said that some people "are just built that way," implying that some people don't like bragging about helping those less fortunate.
"It's because he is a Christian. He is an associate Baptist pastor. He is a father."
Oh please, Cain took Cain down.
Herman's arrogance and "Charley Brown" woe is me, why is everybody, all of a sudden, picking on me, followed by, total ignorance, when it comes to foreign affairs and a pig, when it comes to extra marital affairs. The bottom line, dunce of a candidate. killed the beast.
It's not the media that took him down,Cain himself took down Herman.end of story.
Here we go again blaming every one else, but Herman Cain. What if he had not given the media anything to bring him down
with? Mr. Cain, I am going to give you your own advice: If you get caught in various infidelities and dishonesty,
hypocrite behavior, " Blame Yo'self".
No Way !
It was Herman Cain's middle leg , not the Media !
Don't try and use the Bill Clinton defense ! If you cut down a cherry tree , just tell the truth !
The media didn't take Herman Cain down, Herman Cain took himself down. It's no big loss that he's out of the Presidential race, he wasn't qualified to be POTUS anyway.
Who are these people? These people are lost in Cain land . . . unbelievable (as I shake my head from side to side)
"Asked if she had an opinion about the fact that Cain did not disclose his relationship with White until after he revealed it to the media, Spencer Burdette said that some people "are just built that way," implying that some people don't like bragging about helping those less fortunate.
Praise the Lord for not letting Herman Cain Lead you to the slaughter and remember God looks out for babies and fools. Count your blessing. Amen!
Herman Cain took himself down by being scandalous with women outside of his own marriage.
Oh sure. Blame the media. Everybody is lying except the candidate. Etc. etc. etc.
The media made him grope women and cheat on his wife? So much for personal responsibility.
While I don't support Herman Cain, how is it he goes down, but Newt Gingrich flies to the top? That hypocrite was cheating on his wife while he led the fight to impeach President Clinton. To add insult to injury, he appeared in the hospital where his wife had just received a cancer diagnosis to tell her he wanted a divorce. And they call Romney a cold fish.
How soon, they forget.......Blame yourself!
I don't think Herman Cain is a particularly bad man. I think he wrong about the regressive 9-9-9, but he isn't so very bad. I do think the Presidency isn't what it used to be and that he would have been required to act like a psychopath the way they all are lately. Maybe he's lucky he won't be tested in that role.
He was asked simple questions and either couldn't answer them, or lied about the answers. What kind of politician is this? ... Oh Yeah – the same as all the other ones!!! This guy turned out to be an ignorant lier just like all the Republicans that are in the field. There is only one Republican that is both intelligent and, half-way, honest – that's Huntsman – the one no one on the Right likes! I guess that pretty much proves that those on the Right just prefer STUPID LIARS. How smart do you have to be to make pizzas anyway?? Cain sure didn't make pizza moguls look like geniuses – that's for sure.
To be honest non of this would have been an issue if Cain actually could remember where Libya is.
Blame the Media for everything. Take responsibility for nothing. Typical of the GOP.
Oh... it was the media?
Mr Cain, I would be the 1st to admit.., that the media has it's own agenda and is often focus's on the wrong things. Having said that, you really should have known this... I think you were given the same unfair treatment that candidates usually get....
Ahahahah, don't let the door hit you on the way out!
Why does the GOP always blame the media? Sarah Palin used that excuse to get rich. But she was smart enough to know her male supporters had a huge problem with her sleeping with a black man. BTW, she never denied it and she didn't want further scrutiny from it. Cain was taken down by his philandering ways and not the media.
Take off the blinders!!! He is an imoral, dishonest, PIG. He doesn't deserve our time. Go Away! Save your marriage if you can.
No, that's what cheaters do they hide it from their spouses.
It must have been his "supporters" that he called STUPID. Hey dumba$$es! He took himself down with his womanizing ways....the lying adulterer can only blame himself...this time (as for all the other times he blamed everyone else)
Well, CNN et al, guess you got it done. Hope you're happy, now. How do you sleep at night?
This proves that you can fool some of the people some of the time. How can anyone with a logical mind and any amount of reasoning believe this man. I guess there are some women who know when to walk away from a narcissistic skirt chaser, and some who are fascinated by it. Sad. What is even sadder is that Gloria Cain did not take the Jenny Sanford route and have guts, she decided to stand by the man who is never home and not have a life of her own.