Cain Iowa supporters: Media 'took a good man down’
December 3rd, 2011
05:33 PM ET
3 years ago

Cain Iowa supporters: Media 'took a good man down’

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."


Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain • Iowa
soundoff (393 Responses)
  1. buckup

    Yes, this is a massive conspiracy between liberal media, international political interests, and these Judas accusers who worked for, prayed with, personally know him (not in the carnal sense), and took his money.

    And because he is a Christian, and he is an associate Baptist pastor, and he is a father; he should become an associate pastor at Jimmy Swaggart's and Ted Haggard's churches, and rally their followers to take down this evil cabal before it destroys the only christian country, leaving the rest of the world to Satan and Dominionism.

    December 4, 2011 06:15 am at 6:15 am |
  2. Rinos for Winos

    When you get all of your propaganda and misinformation from Fox, then everything you disagree with is a conspiracy by the liberal media.

    December 4, 2011 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  3. buckup

    "I don't recognize my industry anymore," Lockwood said. "I was taught objectivity, accuracy, fairness, balance. I don't see that happening."

    ==> ask Rupert, Ailes, Rush and Glen to bring it back; they have the monopoly on it.

    December 4, 2011 06:19 am at 6:19 am |
  4. buckup

    "Where's the investigation behind who [these accusers] are?" she said.

    ==>it is called a civil lawsuit. Cain can make the claim of libel and slander. But it only works if he is not lying, and you know what most people think about politicians.

    December 4, 2011 06:23 am at 6:23 am |
  5. buckup

    "I'm not judge or jury. It doesn't matter to me whether it's true or not."

    Hell I just vote as I am told, facts and reality just get in the way of thinking.

    America, love it or leave it. If you don't think like me you are a terrorist.

    December 4, 2011 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  6. buckup

    "This is the one time that I've actually cared."

    What are you doing the rest of your life???

    December 4, 2011 06:29 am at 6:29 am |
  7. jd

    Cain took Cain down, show some responsibility for your problems.

    December 4, 2011 06:37 am at 6:37 am |
  8. mike

    Who took whom down?

    December 4, 2011 06:40 am at 6:40 am |
  9. BJ Bell

    The media just revealed who Mr. Cain was, and some of is wasn't what he wanted the public or his wife to know.

    December 4, 2011 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  10. jdunc

    Cain wouldn't be going down if he did nothing wrong. You can't act pious and self righteous if you have skeletons in your closet, which he did! When your on the big stage you will be outed. Sorry to his supporters who liked his simple message, but being president is not a simple job, like making pizzas! This is probably why many qualified men and women don't run for office, most of us have something we don't want known about us.

    December 4, 2011 07:10 am at 7:10 am |
  11. 4merRepubCT

    Funny how it was okay for Cain to assert almost anything with the disclaimer "now, I have no facts to prove this, but I believe...", and his supporters took his statements as indisputable reality.

    December 4, 2011 07:11 am at 7:11 am |
  12. mb2010a

    If these people from Iowa are so depressed at Herman Cain's exit from the race, they are going to be downright suicidal when the Republicans lose the House and the presidential race in 2012...I thought Iowans were smarter than this.

    December 4, 2011 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
  13. David Stern

    Well I think the truth is Herman Cain was staunch conservative who would not support gay marriage or abortion so they came up with a plan of false accusation to stop his campaign.

    December 4, 2011 07:22 am at 7:22 am |
  14. maximusvad

    He took himself down. Surprised he didn't blame Obama.

    December 4, 2011 07:22 am at 7:22 am |
  15. ComSenseWiz

    It continues to amaze me at how blind and oblivious some people can be. As a CPA with a post-grad degree in tax law, his "9-9-9" plan was absolutely delusional and DOA in Congress. Cain was a buffoon on foreign policy. "Likable" does not make one Presidential material and in Cain's case, not even close. Frankly, the serial groper and philanderer was an embarrassment to the GOP.

    December 4, 2011 07:24 am at 7:24 am |
  16. j r thomas

    The Obamabots are deliriously happy now that Mr Cain has ended his campaign...He was a huge threat to them and to the far left Democrats who hijacked the Democratic party. Nevertheless, many of us will vote for ANYONE BUT OBAMA... he has done nothing for the black community and he is deliberatelyy bringing America down....we can do better and we will.... ANYONE BUT OBAMA ...

    December 4, 2011 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  17. TBS

    Herman Cain brought himself down! It is clear that he was having an affair with that woman for over 13 years. The fact that he is a Baptist preacher makes it even worse! His supporters need to put the blame where it belongs-on Cain himself! Quit blaming the media!

    December 4, 2011 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  18. David Stern

    If you are against gay marriage and do not support abortion they will falsely accuse you to keep you from running. One of the accusers is being evicted from her apartment for owing 7500 dollars in back rent.

    December 4, 2011 07:34 am at 7:34 am |
  19. Rationalfew

    The media didn't take him down, his republican adversaries did it. Perry, Romney and Newt.

    December 4, 2011 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  20. BobWhalen

    The media did not take Cain down. Cain and his wandering ways took Cain down. If the Media was at fault then why isn't Gingrich in the trash pile with him. We all know Gingrich had the same tendencies. Clinton, Kennedy(s),Cain and Gingrich all have the same gene flaw. We have become so desensitized to these failing,s along with Lying and cheating bankers we would have to (and should) throw them out as soon as they surface. We need to set a better example for our kids and show ZERO tolerance.

    December 4, 2011 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  21. Rob

    It's too easy to blame the media when the media is merely reporting the information. I also think people believe far too much in human nature. What Cain did is not hard to believe at all. It happens all the time. Doctors, lawyers, clergy, construction workers, it doesn't matter. People have a great capacity for doing the wrong thing. I find it pretty easy to believe that Cain sometimes allowed his lower self to take over.

    December 4, 2011 07:53 am at 7:53 am |
  22. Paintpaintpaint

    Well, it happens ALL the time! Think: Howard Dean! Chased out because he raised his voice AT A RALLY. If he gets hounded out for that... Cain deserves to be out... but then again so does Newt.. lying, cheating cad that HE is..

    December 4, 2011 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
  23. Grog Says

    Cain supporters are in deep denial.
    Maybe they can de-tox.

    December 4, 2011 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  24. Grog Says

    ***** Its called adultery ****

    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."

    December 4, 2011 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  25. Libralee

    I just don't understand people today! There is only ONE person to blame for Cain's downfall....................CAIN!

    Just some more pot stickers I guess.................

    December 4, 2011 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
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