Herman Cain communications director resigns
October 1st, 2011
05:55 PM ET
12 years ago

Herman Cain communications director resigns

Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) - The communications director for Herman Cain's presidential campaign has resigned, CNN has learned.

Ellen Carmichael told CNN on Saturday her decision is firm but not yet finalized.

"I have resigned but the paperwork's not final," Carmichael said.

Carmichael explained her decision is a personal one and that she's pursuing other professional opportunities. She also said that her assistant, Francis Boustany, is also leaving for professional reasons.

CNN asked Carmichael about the Republican presidential candidate's reaction to her departure. Carmichael is well known to the political press corps as a reliable and responsible promoter of Cain's message. She was recently recognized at a CNN event as part of a new generation of newsmakers. And Cain has often publicly praised Carmichael.

"It's a very amicable departure," Carmichael said. "He wished me the best of luck. And I will forever be fond of him and appreciative of this opportunity."

In June, two other staffers left the Cain campaign. CNN asked Carmichael if her and Boustany's departures are a sign of more trouble for Cain.

"No comment," she said.

"I have served Mister Cain for more than a year," Carmichael added. "We've had ups and downs. We've had tons of money and very little money. And I've stuck through some very difficult and some very rewarding times on the campaign. And it was just time for me to go pursue other professional opportunities."

The timing of Carmichael's resignation is sure to raise eyebrows. Cain's candidacy is currently generating headlines, having recently won a Florida straw poll, seeing some momentum in some polls and earning some positive reviews for recent debate performances. On Friday, the candidate snagged a spot on NBC's "Tonight Show with Jay Leno."

Carmichael insists her decision is "not reflective of any particular current event."

"I am incredibly fond of Mister Cain. I think he's a fantastic candidate and a great person of the highest character. And I think he has an important voice and an important message. My decision to leave is not a reflection of any sort of displeasure with Mister Cain."

CNN contacted the Cain campaign for reaction but did not receive a response.

Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. ed galbraith

    "Mr. Cain"...perfect example of a bloated ego presenting itself as confidence. Take a cold shower, Herman.

    October 1, 2011 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  2. BeverlyNC

    Cain will never last in the Republican Party It amazed me he would sign up to be part of a Party who is racist and has spent every day since President Obama was elected slandering him with racist lies, disrespecting him because he is biracial, and doing everything possible to make him seem not worthy, not legitimate, and other hate-based tactics.
    President Obama is the ONLY one who has real family values and real Christian values. He is the ONLY one fighting for the PEOPLE, fighting for jobs, economic recovery, and equality for all. He is a brilliant man and has proven what a great leader he is. His list of accomplishments is long – both domestically and many great foreign policy successes.
    Good lucl Herman – but you are with the wrong Party -one that will never let you advance.

    October 1, 2011 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm |
  3. Chhoten

    This spells bad news for his campaign

    October 2, 2011 12:09 am at 12:09 am |
  4. frida

    Wow that's not nice in the middle of the campaign?I guess they don't think Cain will win.

    October 2, 2011 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  5. Aaron

    The poor woman probably tired of talking about pizza.

    October 2, 2011 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  6. AudreyinGa

    THEY got to her. Last night she was BRAINWASHED!!!

    October 2, 2011 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  7. Casey

    Incredible that you don't mention his new spokesperson, former Rumsfeld spokesman JD Gordon. This guy is a big deal, yet you portray it in a fashion like the campaign must be falling apart.

    October 2, 2011 02:25 am at 2:25 am |

    The check bounced and getting paid is very personal.No comment means that Cain is dead like Bachmann, Ginrich and Rick Bush. The desperate GOBP are begging ANY warm body to run. Snooki Palin will ride in on her black horse to repeat 2008.

    October 2, 2011 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  9. Reggie from LA

    And so it begins. The descriptive interview above is one of the most thinly veiled "I'm outta here!!"" excuses on paper. Now you know something's ugly in that camp. Cain's win over Perry in Florida was probably too much for the Right Wing. Oh no. That will not do. Shocker. Convenient that shortly thereafter and seemingly for no particular reason, Sarah Palin gut punched Cain, by calling him "Herb". DO YOU REALLY THINK SHE CAME UP WITH THAT ON HER OWN? Don't count on it. Cain probably knows that too. And why right out of the blue? Not out of the blue. You can bet she was "loaded" with that "Herb" reference by her "friends who are not Washington insiders". With Cain's knees wobbling from that name callin' and for whatever the reason, Carmichael is now about to distance herself. I'm not certain that Mr Cain ever really believed he's a Tea Party favorite. He was just "brainwashed" by the Right.

    October 2, 2011 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  10. The Greedy Old Pigs have lost their minds!

    She must have realized that Cain's upside down 666 plan was about as realistic as claiming the earth is flat.

    October 2, 2011 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  11. clayusmcret

    CNdNc makes it sound like she's leaving due to some implosion. Notice there's no mention of the highly respected big gun coming in to take her place.

    October 2, 2011 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
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