Cain: I can feel the bull's-eye
October 18th, 2011
04:42 PM ET
10 years ago

Cain: I can feel the bull's-eye

(CNN) - Herman Cain said Tuesday he could feel the pressure from his fellow 2012 candidates ahead of the CNN Western Leadership Conference Debate in Las Vegas.

"The way it feels is that you got this big bull's-eye on your back, and it keeps getting bigger," Cain told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on "The Situation Room."

Programming note: GOP presidential candidates next face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, October 18, in the CNN Western Republican Presidential Debate in Las Vegas, Nevada. Submit your questions for the debate here.

"It feels great, but as you know, the challenge is 'how do we continue that momentum?' and we believe we know how to do it."

Cain said he was prepared to take on the current GOP frontrunner, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who Cain said was trying to present himself as something he was not.

"The biggest problem I have with Governor Romney, who I respect, is him trying to say that he is the non-politician, business candidate," Cain said. "I am the true non-politician, business candidate in this race. He was a Wall Street executive. I was a main street executive. Because I dealt with individual businesses."

When asked if Romney was a Christian, Cain refused to answer, saying he was focusing instead on his opponent's platform.

"I want to basically defeat Mitt Romney based upon the strength of my ideas versus his," Cain said. "I think I've got a strong plan relative to his, as well as strong ideas about the other issues we face."

When responding to foreign policy questions, Cain gave mostly vague answers, saying that he would need all of the intelligence and data to give firm answers. When asked about Monday's swap of one Israeli soldier for thousands of Palestinian prisoners, Cain wouldn't say for sure if he would make a similar decision as president. Cain wouldn't say whether he'd support the Israeli government's decision.

"I would have to know all of the considerations he made to say yes or not, because I'm sure that there were a lot of considerations he had to make in order to make that decision," Cain said. "On the surface, you would say one for hundreds doesn't make any sense, but here's how I make decisions and this is why I respect Prime Minister Netanyahu so much. He looks at all of the facts before he makes a judgment call. We don't know all the facts."

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Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain • Nevada • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Wall Street Crime Victim

    Drivin' that crazy train, high on KochCain.

    October 18, 2011 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  2. sammieb51

    Really funny comment ha? One thing about comedy, if no one's laughing, it wasn't funny. I heard a quip from him the next day saying quite seriously that "I am not backing down from the electric fence comment blah blah blah blah" so I guess it wasn't a joke until he got quite a bit of backlash. This guy must really think Americans are stupid people if he thinks we can't tell BS when we see it.

    I see none of these "candidates" addressing the real issue with illegal immigration - going after the employers. Imposing sanctions on the growers/agricultural industry, meat packing industry, construction industry where these illegals flock to for "illegal" work where they pay no taxes, get no benefits, child labor laws don't exist ..... No One Wants to go after the employers hiring them. Why Not?

    October 18, 2011 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  3. Indy


    You do understand it is the Republicans bulls eye on Cain right ? Cain is talking about the Bulls Eye put on him from GOP candidates you get that correct ? You also understand that it is the Republicans bulls eye on the middle class, right not the democrats right ?

    October 18, 2011 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  4. mike

    Another candidate with an acute case of Ross Perot syndrome. In the beginning they make for some fun and excitement in the race. In the end he won't have a clue!
    You can bet that president Obama would love to run against this guy.

    October 18, 2011 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    More like "Ole One Eye" when your kitty is proudly prancing around with its tail straight in the air...

    October 18, 2011 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  6. jrt1098

    Cain is an excellent candidate....despite people like Cain, Colin Powell, Sec. of State Condoleeza Rice, Alan West and J.C. Watts the State Run Media and the professional Race baiters like Sharpton and Jesse jackson manage to portray the Republicans as Racist every time, with dishonesty like that.......even blacks in this country are not ready to have an honest discussion about Race ! They trot out the Race Card and the media.....just can't help themselves !!!

    October 18, 2011 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  7. skarphace

    Do Republicans really want to replace Obama in 2012?

    Then nominate Ron Paul.

    It really is that simple.

    Of course, we would have a President that brings honesty, integrity, intelligence, and determination to the table. Not sure if the Tea Party folk could deal with that. They seem to want someone who's platform consists of speaking points and partisan rhetoric. This would not be Paul.

    October 18, 2011 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  8. Al-NY,NY

    Flavor of the week will be gone in a month. He is being exposed little by little (by the GOP) and soon will bow out but not without playing the race card. How's that "po" Herm? And by the way, can you comment on your church friend saying you know the T-B party has racists in it but you won't say anything because you need them to continue your phantom campaign?

    October 18, 2011 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  9. GaryB

    The inescable fact is that Cain's 9-9-9 plan would effectively raise taxes for a large percentage (if not the majority) of Americans while also vastly increasing the national debt and deficit. It's a great plan if you're already rich, but not so good for the rest of us. Cain also fails to address how social security or medicare would be funded (beyond talking vaguely about cuts and increased efficiency). His ideas for dealing with social security are, unfortunately, as vague as his ideas for dealing with foreign policy.

    October 18, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  10. Rick McDaniel

    His plan is not workable, and yes, that means he has a HUGE bullseye on his back.

    October 18, 2011 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  11. skarphace

    How exactly did Cain come up with three nines for his tax plan? Was it because 9% income tax, 9% sales tax, 9% corporate tax just coincidentally is the exact numbers that would work the best for America?

    On the contrary, I think it is becomming quite obvious to all voters that he chose those numbers for a campaign slogan. 999. Easy to say, and easy to remember. Horrible economics, though.

    October 18, 2011 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  12. ED FL

    When the other candidates start questioning Cain and he can not give a half truthful answer it will really show how out of this league he really is. He can always revert to the old adage that they are picking on him do to his being aperson of color. HIS big mouth and stupid answers will be the reason that they make him look incompetent. If you want to dance you have to pay the orchestra. This old adage was right 50 yrs ago and it applies now. Maybe a better one for the pizza guy is if you can't stand the heat ,get out o the kitchen.

    October 18, 2011 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  13. ThinkAgain

    "Do Republicans really want to replace Obama in 2012? Then nominate Ron Paul."

    Ron Paul is too old, and believes in a dog-eat-dog world. He's an isolationist, unequipped to deal with present-day reality. His hero is a woman who thought compassion and altruism were evil, a hedonistic atheist who had contempt for working people.

    Besides that, President Obama would clean the floor with him in a debate.

    October 18, 2011 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  14. Portland tony

    It's sad that all these relative intelligent politicians have to sign pledges they won't do this or that plus bow down and indorse religous hypocrites just to get the nomination.

    October 18, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  15. Dixie Independent voter

    999 makes a good bumper sticker. Cain's "catchy" economic plan.

    October 18, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  16. normajean

    Mr.Cain thinks making a joke about people being electrocuted on a fence is funny and that Americans need to get a sense of humor!! THE FACT THAT ANYONE IS CONSIDERING HIM FOR PRESIDENT SHOWS THAT WE "DO" HAVE A SENSE OF HUMOR!!!!!!

    October 18, 2011 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  17. newview

    All this tax talk needs restructured presentation. Why can't we make incentive for high income households provide a specified amount of civic engagement to government subsidized programs? Not taxes-humanitarian responsibilities that come along with having such fortune

    October 18, 2011 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  18. CAL USA

    First Republicans fell in love with Sarah Palin. She was flirtatious but non-commital, so they fell in love with Donald Trump. He played them until the President exposed him as a charlatan, so they fell in love with Michelle Bachmann. In a few weeks she proved conclusively that she was the moron most of us knew she was, so they fell in love with Rick Perry. They quickly found out that he makes Bachmann look smart, so they fell in love with Herman Cain. At what point will they recognize that the people they are looking to for leadership are a collection of idiots, flip floppers and panderers? You're running out of candidates... and out of time...

    October 18, 2011 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  19. Jimmy

    What is the one thing that you will do when in office that will bring back my equity in my home?

    October 18, 2011 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  20. CAL USA

    Dear Think Again,

    You missed one point about Ayn Rand. While Ron Paul might worship her, she would not return the favor. In fact, she thought libertarianism was little more than polite anarchy. Rather than an advocate of populism, she was in fact an elitist who believed that those who were intellectually superior should not be constrained by government.

    October 18, 2011 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  21. Jimmy

    What is one step that will fix the Housing market?

    October 18, 2011 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  22. The other decider

    Herm, if you hear a helicopter overhead and the bulls-eye's getting bigger, it's probably Sara Palin mistaking you for a moose.

    October 18, 2011 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  23. Calimafia

    Hey, I've got a 0 – 0 – 0 plan. Goes like this.........$0 for megabank bailouts by taxpayers, $0 for bonuses for CEO's of ANY corporation that moves U.S jobs offshore or doesn't pay income taxes, $0 to be spent by lobbyists...................So, can I run for Pres?????????

    October 18, 2011 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  24. Calimafia

    Soooooooo, can someone please explain to me why EVERY comment I post, regardless of the content or when it's posted on this board alone ( not on other boards ) is "awaiting moderation" when I am in COMPLETE compliance with the Terms of Service ( Yes, I read the terms completely ) . Has anyone else had a similar experience?

    Additionally, no matter how benign the comments, they are NEVER posted.

    October 18, 2011 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  25. Florida Frank

    The one thing you will not hear about from any candidate is the cause of our America spiraling towards poverty. Ross Perot warned that if we tore down our fair trade policies. we would hear the giant sucking sound of our companies exiting from America – going to cheap foreign labor markets. We just passed three more trade agreements that both partied agreed to. They are on the same page, complicit with the media and the core strength of America has been shipped overseas. You don't have to be an economist – simply see the red warning flag that flies every where you go in America. Bottom line, virtually nothing is made here anymore, the remaining jobs are extremely sub standard; even Americans within America are being replaced by imported cheap foreign labor whenever possible. 14 Tril in debt not including unfunded liab9ilities – otherwise 130 trillion in debt. We will not be able to vote our way out of this problem.

    October 18, 2011 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
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