Herman Cain communications director resigns
October 1st, 2011
05:55 PM ET
11 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. GI Joe

    Mr Redeyes - er, nevermind.

    Must be trouble on the nut-farm. ha ha ha

    October 1, 2011 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  2. B W Styles

    Well, didn't take very long for the reality check, did it Herb? Campaign broke? I'm sure Trump will float you a loan until your 'ship come in'. After all, you did win that meaningful straw poll in Florida, didn't you?

    October 1, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  3. Donkey Party

    Face it, she couldn't take anymore of his black-nut lunacy, so like a smart rat, she fled the ship before it's completely submerged.

    October 1, 2011 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  4. GI Joe

    Maybe joining up with the latest and "greatest"? (Christie the bully).

    October 1, 2011 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  5. Karen

    The liberal "RACIST" will be here posting only negative comments about Mr. Cain because he's a black man.

    October 1, 2011 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  6. Marie MD

    Don't worry cain. Why don't you hire the imbecilic moron from AK to come work for you. She was singing your praises on faux news and screeching her usual bs about people she knows nothing about. How do we know? She kept calling you herb instead of herman. Not once, not twice, but at least four times! That woman IS AN IDIOT!

    October 1, 2011 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  7. Christine

    HELLO.. Cain has moved into the top tier. He needs a TOP communications team.

    October 1, 2011 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  8. kravitz

    Okay so the '999' explanation fell apart on Leno last night. But besides the fact that he just seems like a crazy granddaddy, I would like to know the real reason for this departure...

    October 1, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  9. gay republican (putting America first)

    Go Cain Go, please AMERICANS Vote for herman cain, our first BLACK PRESIDENT, an articulate, smart, military man, a self made bussiness man, hes so kind

    October 1, 2011 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  10. sara

    "Jumping off a run-a-way freight train"....Hey, Angry Black Man....you don't speak for me. What have you done for the 16% unemployment rate....the disparity of wealth....the low wage jobs and the "undercover racism" that is played to NOT give opportunity. Everybody don't make pizzas......I didn't like your pizzas....It was as "tasteless" as you.

    October 1, 2011 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  11. gay republican (putting America first)


    October 1, 2011 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  12. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Evidently someone does like black walnuts or even black wingnuts.

    October 1, 2011 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  13. bp

    A classic example of a news items where you know without a doubt that no one quoted is being straightforward.

    October 1, 2011 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    Maybe she does not like the Black Walnut flavor LOL

    October 1, 2011 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  15. ED FL

    Back to delivering Pizza Mr Cain . What do you think of your GOP now ? They did and will continue to use you as long as their interests make it easier to have a Black man cut down another Black Man in this instance the President of the USA.

    October 1, 2011 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  16. GOP = Greed Over People

    And to think, I thought b!tch slapping Bailin' Palin by callling her "iced milk" was one of the nicer things I have heard about the grizzly grifter!

    Guess Ellen likes iced milk and teed off at the insult!

    October 1, 2011 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  17. Indy

    The price of Pizza is too damm high !

    October 1, 2011 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  18. thomas

    Pizza is a good thing , yet to much of a good thing can be a bad thing !

    Man can not sustain on PIZZA alone , No Man is a Pizza , you know what I mean ?

    October 1, 2011 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  19. Sandy

    She probably didnt want anyone to think that she as communications director had anything to do with his idiotic "blacks are brainwashed" comment.

    October 1, 2011 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  20. liberal texanist

    Maybe she found a pubic hair on her coke can too?

    October 1, 2011 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  21. Joe

    The House at 999 Cain Lane is in the process of crumbling.

    October 1, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  22. Larry L

    It's hard to write copy for a right-wing African American in the Republican Party. These folks pretty much hate everybody and a black man is little more than a token to "prove" they haven't worked to ruin President Obama's initiatives because they are racists. Right. Just look at the photos of any Tea Party gathering – angry white bigots who find something to hate in every aspect of our government. They hate Michelle Obama... how could that be?

    October 1, 2011 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  23. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Cain doesn't seem to be able to take advantage of what he has. He won the Florida straw poll and didn't do anything with it. People are starting to see that he doesn't understand a campaign. These are the first signs. Cain won't make it because he has never run a campaign nor does he seen to think that he really needs that experience. Running for president needs experince; also needs an understanding when a campaign faulters or what it needs to keep running. That is the difference between business and politics. Cain won't get it.

    October 1, 2011 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |

    I wonder if she was brainwashed, too!! Go peddle your pizzas Hermie, you're out of your league.

    October 1, 2011 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  25. jackie

    I dont blame her I would leave too anytime a candidate is going to say Africian American has been brainwashed by the Democratic Party I think he has bee brainwashed by the Republican Party. Get out and prusue other opportunity he's not going to be there anyway.

    October 1, 2011 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
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