Cain: Black community 'brainwashed' into voting for Dems
September 28th, 2011
03:52 PM ET
9 years ago

Cain: Black community 'brainwashed' into voting for Dems

Washington (CNN) - The one African-American running for the GOP presidential nomination said Wednesday the black community was 'brainwashed' for traditionally siding with liberal politicians.

"African-Americans have been brainwashed into not being open minded, not even considering a conservative point of view," Godfather's Pizza executive Herman Cain said on CNN's "The Situation Room" in an interview airing Wednesday between 5-7 p.m. ET. "I have received some of that same vitriol simply because I am running for the Republican nomination as a conservative. So it's just brainwashing and people not being open minded, pure and simple."

Cain went on to explain that his interactions with African Americans led him to be optimistic about his own chances with the demographic.

"This whole notion that all African-Americans are not going to vote for Obama is not necessarily true," Cain said.

He continued, "I believe a third [of African-Americans] would vote for me, based on my own anecdotal feedback. Not vote for me because I'm black but because of my policies."

Cain also weighed in on the recent chatter surrounding Chris Christie, saying the recent reports the New Jersey governor is reconsidering a run for president were hurting the electorate.

"It's not insulting as much as it is a disservice to the American people," Cain said. "Chris Christie has been saying for a long time he's not interested in running. The media is trying to create a story by sucking Chris Christie into race, just like they made a story by sucking Rick Perry into the race."

Cain said the media should focus on the candidates who have already declared their candidacy to give voters a better idea of the field.

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Filed under: Herman Cain • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (1,341 Responses)
  1. TXJim

    Mr. Cain, how can a Black man be a Conservative? Not a Republican... but a Conservative....
    Conservatives – to the man – opposed anti-lynching laws, voting rights laws, anti-segregation laws, anti-discrimination laws, equal hiring laws, and equal pay laws.
    If those Conservatives had had their way, you would not have been CEO of Godfather's Pizza, you would not even be delivering pizza, because you have a Black face, you would be in the back sweeping up and washing the dishes. If those Conservatives had had their way, you would not be running for president.
    In fact, you would not even be allowed to VOTE on election day.
    My question to you is this: What the hell is WRONG with you?

    September 28, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  2. mw-maryland

    Brainwashed? There is nothing about the Republican party that appeals to me at all!

    TO Truth: African Americans would have voted for the Democratic nominee no matter who it was. Did you really expect them to vote for McCain/Palin? Dream on.

    September 28, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  3. Florida Joe

    Only those that call themselves members of the Republican Party, as it exists today. You have to be brainwashed to support a group of people that promotes policies that repress you.

    September 28, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  4. bonnie

    BTW, 'Truth,' to say Obama won because he is black shows your ignorance. Obama won by 12 MILLION votes. Blacks make up about 12-15% of the total population and 100% of them certainly did not vote at all. So look at the numbers. Obama won because 8 years of GOP rule ran this once economically healthy (thanks to Bill) country into the dirt and the largest financial calamity since the depression. To think that *anyone* would trust the GOP again is beyond me.....

    September 28, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  5. Lisa P

    @ Truth

    One voter an hour away from where you live said on the news that she voted for Obama because he is black and suddenly the means "the whole election" is about race? For everybody? Everywhere? Sounds like pretty flimsy evidence to me. What next? Global warming is fake because it was cold yesterday? Thanks, but I think I'll get my "truth" from something other than your say-so.

    September 28, 2011 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  6. Jerry C

    I read a great deal of ignorant rant about the Republican Party and its history where race is concerned. Let's review, shall we?
    Republican Party was formed to end Slavery in the US. The official Democrat platform was pro-slavery.
    Democrat Party was the Party of Jim Crow.
    Democrat Party was the Party of the Klan
    Woodrow Wilson was a virulent Racist – and Democrat.
    Senator Byrd – Democrat – Grand Kleagal of the Klan.
    Governor George Wallace blocking the way into schools and the courthouse – Democrat.
    President Eisenhower sends a Civil Rights Bill to Congress – blocked by the Democrats.
    In 1964, President Johnson signs the Civil Rights Bill, but only because Senator Everett Dirkson comes through with More Republican votes than the Democrats put up.
    The Party that has always believed in the potential of ALL men and women is the Republican Party.
    Think differently if you wish, but history does not support you.

    September 28, 2011 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  7. Ji

    As an Asian, it offends me that you [Democrats] try to paint everyone on the "right" with the same [white] brush. Stop playing the race card, because it's old, counterproductive, and is merely an excuse. Cain has a point because those on the "left" tend to repeat the same tired vitriol fed to them by mass media over and over and over again.

    September 28, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  8. Show Your True Colors

    ...Cain has shown his true color

    September 28, 2011 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  9. JoeT

    I don't know who has or has not been brainwashed, but I'm thinking someone running for president as a republican has Stockholm syndrome.

    September 28, 2011 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  10. Candace H.

    I totally disagree with you Mr. Cain. How is it that the black community is brainwashed? Why? Because we are just looking for a better life for ourselves. Should we "sell-out_ like you have against your own people? Uh huh... yeah we see what you're all about. An embarassment to the black community.

    September 28, 2011 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  11. Rudy NYC

    Claxton wrote:
    What you'll never hear Republicans like Herman Cain say is that at one time, the GOP really was the progressive party in America, and the Democrats were the Party of No.
    Wrong. There are two major baptist groups in this country that make up the majority of the so called Chritian conservatives. The ABC, American Baptists Conference, and the SBC, Southern Baptist Conference. Those two groups have a msjor rift between them.

    Most of the members of ABC are overt racists and rallied behind Reagan 30 years ago. It was they who became the Reagan Democrats. It was they whose members made up much of the KKK, which uses the bible to justify their racism. The Civil Rights Act caused a major split between ABC and SBC. It was members of the ABC that attended Perry's revival meeting.

    Polls show that a higher of percentage of black Americans hold conservative social views than white Americans. Recent polls showed that 80% of black Americans oppose gay marriage and abortion. Most older black Americans are registered Republicans, just as their parents were registered with the party of Lincoln. Unfortunately, the Republican Party has dismissed the black vote because their isn't any money in it.

    September 28, 2011 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  12. Libertarian

    How funny and predictable. Cain states the obvious and everyone on the far left screams. If Obama said all white evangelists were brainwashed, which is just as obvious, the far right would scream. For the most part, the average American voter is pretty gullible. I'd like to think that people in other countries are smarter than us, but I suspect it isn't the case.

    September 28, 2011 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  13. More of the Same His Name is Cain

    Cain's been brainwashed. Since when did the Rethuglican Party have African Americans' best interest at heart? At least the Dems are reaching out. Cain looks like a candidate who's always sucking his teeth.

    September 28, 2011 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  14. Sarah

    I'm not brainwashed, I'm racist, and I'm voting for the black man again.

    September 28, 2011 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  15. TeaPartyIsForLittleGirls

    Mr. Cain,

    Please win the Republican primary first. Let's see how many rednecks vote for you. Then you can complain about black people being brainwashed.

    September 28, 2011 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  16. SaintM

    Herman Cain, the fact that we elected an African American President will allow many people of color to think that it is possible–Barack Obama's presidency is what is allowing you to run for president now. At any other time in history you would have been chided, or dismissed altogether–remember Shirley Chisolm?

    For you to be so insincere to this group is in very bad taste. A lot has changed, and you need to give people more credit than that. You are generalizing and it is very hot water to be stepping into.

    September 28, 2011 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  17. ja

    Cain, put nicely has his head in the sand, the republican party is a mean spirited machine reserved for the rich, they balk at higher taxes on the rich how unpatriotic, there is a lesson in steele's disposal

    September 28, 2011 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  18. Kevin

    Oh, for sure. Up is down, black is white, good is bad, war is peace. Keep saying it, maybe you'll convince yourself. What a tool.

    September 28, 2011 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  19. CRG

    I like this fellow. He actually talks about problems and gives advice on solutions. He is a cut above the other Republican candidates and their Tea Party backers. He is the only one whom, I believe, is Presidential and could challenge Obama in 2012.

    September 28, 2011 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  20. Miss G

    Dear Truth and others who follow this very narrow minded mode of thinking: You take ONE PIECE OF THE PIE, and you extrapolate it over a whole race of people. What Cain said...extrapolates his contention over a WHOLE RACE OF PEOPLE. I personally did not vote for McCain...b/c of Palin. Let's face it, the guy was 72 at the time...hmmm....that would mean Palin..would have had a pretty high chance of becoming President if the guy had croaked....NOT A GOOD SCENARIO..and it doesn't matter how hard core Republican one is...that's a scary thought. Black people are waiting for a handout? Please fact check yourself. I am a daughter of a Desert Storm/Panama invasion veteran, and a proud niece of a Vietnam Vet. My Mother STILL works for the government, and I grew up with love of country, and the idea that any success from life COMES FROM HARD WORK. I have two degrees, and am a successful Manager. Now how's that for your truth? *people who stereotype, PLEASE understand that the what is portrayed on TV represents 20%...reality is NEVER represented* GET A LIFE, AND GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT! BTW...I AM a Black woman.

    September 28, 2011 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  21. Rudy NYC

    @Terry, VA
    I guess you just don't get it.

    "Black Americans have looked at Mr. Cain. All they see is the back of head." or something like that.

    That means Mr. Cain is not talking about issues that concern black Americans. That he is not trying to recruit their votes by addressing them directly. Mr. Cain, like all Republicans, speak to issues that most black Americans find troubling and against their own best interests.

    That is what the phrase "see the back of his head" means. I never mince words. I mean the phrase literally. That Mr. Cain is talking to another group, and has ignored the black voter. Maybe if he turned around, came to the African American community, and organized a voter registration drive or conducted a jobs fair, he might attract some black votes. But, when has a Republican ever done such a thing? Only on the most local level, never on the national level.

    September 28, 2011 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  22. gaucho420

    African Americans may have voted for Obama because he was black...but I personally know of white people who did not vote for him, simply because he was black.

    It cuts both ways.

    September 28, 2011 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  23. Debby

    It would interesting to hear why do 99% of the black community vote for the Dem. party and of course Obama in 2008.

    September 28, 2011 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  24. AudreyinGa

    Knowing and stating history and facts can make you a powerful individual. Not knowing your history and facts makes you look foolish. Distorting history and facts makes you look dishonest and unworthy of political office.

    September 28, 2011 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  25. Edward

    Brainwashed into voting dem? If you call republican opposition to the civil rights act brainwashing then yes you would be right. African Americans voted republican before democrats pushed through the civil rights act to what was believed to be republican opposition. At this point voting dem for many African Americans is cultural because everyone thinks that a racist is more likely to be a republican than a democrat. If you look at the views of many middle class African Americans they tend to be conservative yet they always vote dem. Why? Because a lot of them think that republicans hate them.

    September 28, 2011 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
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