November 7th, 2011
02:15 PM ET
11 years ago

Cain accuser says candidate groped her in 1997

(CNN) - A woman who claimed Herman Cain sexually assaulted her in 1997 said Monday she hoped the Republican presidential candidate would come clean about other allegations of sexual misconduct.

Sharon Bialek said Cain reached under her skirt and pressed her head toward his crotch when Bialek was visiting Cain in Washington to get job hunting advice after she had been "terminated" from the National Restaurant Association.

MORE: Cain faces new claim of sexual misconduct

Bialek said that when she protested, Cain asked, "You want a job, right?"

Bialek worked at the educational foundation of the National Restaurant Association beginning from 1996 to 1997, when she said her superiors released her from her position, citing poor fundraising numbers.

Bialek said she was already acquainted with Cain after meeting him at NRA conferences, and visited him in Washington in July 1997 to see if he could help her regain her position or find another position within the organization.

When Bialek and Cain were returning from dinner, Bialek said Cain made inappropriate advances in a parked car.

"He put his hand on my leg, under my skirt, and reached for my genitals," Bialek said. "He also grabbed my head and pushed it toward his crotch."

Cain's campaign denied Bialek's allegations in a statement before the press conference began.

"Just as the country finally begins to refocus on our crippling $15 trillion national debt and the unacceptably high unemployment rate, now activist celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred is bringing forth more false accusations against the character of Republican front-runner Herman Cain," the statement read.

"All allegations of harassment against Mr. Cain are completely false. Mr. Cain has never harassed anyone. Fortunately the American people will not allow Mr. Cain's bold "9-9-9 Plan", clear foreign policy vision and plans for energy independence to be overshadowed by these bogus attacks."

Cain is entering his second week of battling reports he sexually harassed women while heading the NRA in the 1990s. Last week, the lawyer for one woman who reportedly settled with the association over harassment allegations said his client would not reveal her name or any details about her claim.

Various media outlets reported there were two more women who made allegations against Cain and subsequently received financial settlements.

Cain said Saturday he was finished answering questions about the sexual harassment claims, telling reporters in Texas he was focused on getting his campaign "on message."

"Read all of the other accounts, where everything has been answered - end of story," Cain said.

–CNN's Kevin Bohn contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. john

    Cain lives up to his Godfather image making propositions to these women tha they can't refuse..............Oh, wait they did refuse! And now Herm, we refuse to vote for a sick two timing predator who cares as much for women as he does for the hurting masses.

    November 7, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  2. Texas Tumbleweed

    Insane in the Cain Brain!

    November 7, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  3. grizzly

    Well, this is typically America. There are always some chicks around who want to get at teh big bucks for nothing. Karl Rove did you set this up? I am sure you did you sleeze bag.

    November 7, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  4. Cindy

    If Cain is a true man of integrity he needs to come clean. I respect a person more for being honest and not candy coating the truth. Telling the truth can cleanse the soul. If you cannot be honest of your past discrections maybe you should not be running for the President of the United States of America. Politicians, take them or leave them. The sad thing is, do we have any candidates, Republican or Democrat that can bring America to once it once was, not at this time. Cain is now the prime example.

    November 7, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  5. Whome

    This didn't bother this bimbo for how many years, now that Cain is running for office it's an issue, you know she kind of looks like the woman who made unwanted sexual advances toward me when I was a child? Has Cain got to the same number of woman Clinton did?

    November 7, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  6. JoeBelow

    The problem with this type of accusation is you don't have to prove a darned thing. All you have to do is accuse and it's over. Maybe Cain is guilty but it really doesn't matter. Guilt or innocence is completely inconsequential and political enemies know this.

    November 7, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  7. ChiTownArkie

    Herman Cain can't explain.

    Oh Herman. You poor sad sack of crap. Now you can just focus on getting what you wanted all along. Selling books and the job at Fox News. They don't care that you're a lying and conniving womanizer. They'll just welcome you to the club.

    November 7, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  8. Josh Gonzalez

    LOL Oh Lord let the GOP primary NEVER end!

    November 7, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  9. conservativeforAmerica

    Anyone can come out and say anything! Why did she not report this in 1997 or when he rean for congress in 2003? Look these people are just looking for their 10 minutes of fame and anyone with half a brain knows that! There is absolutely no evidence that this happened or any of the other ones for that matter! When you are at the top of the mountain people will do anything to get you to fall off. That is human nature. If you where fired from a company and the main man of that company tried to molest you would you keep it to yourself??? Nope I don't think so! If you can't bring him down by policy start slinging mud!

    November 7, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  10. Mark in MI

    and republicans and tea partiers will continue to blindly support this poor excuse of a man!

    November 7, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  11. v_mag

    Now, Cain supporters finally have what they need to counter the harrassment charges. They have an actual victim that they can blame! And she's white, so they can deal that racey race card off the bottom of the deck! As we blog, Cain-anites are digging like so many blind moles into the history of Ms Bialek, frantically searching for a high school acquaintance of hers who will swear that they once had their hand somewhere inappropriate on her.

    November 7, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  12. markmaximus

    Butter-Up Herman Cain because he is TOAST!
    Now for our next Cruise Director on the GOP's "Nut Boat", Michelle Bachman!

    November 7, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  13. buke56

    Cain said his the 1st accusation against him had no merit and he had no knowledge of a settlement.. Then the 2nd accusation came out and then he suddenly remembered the 1st incident and "some kind of settlement being made" Last week a 3rd victim spoke up ans now a woman from his former company has stepped into the spotlight naming the time & place Cain accosted her. With this going on, his referral to the Middle East as "Becky Becky Stan Stan" and his complete ignorance that China has had nuclear capabilities since the 60s what is it that makes the sheeple think he is smart enough to be Pres?

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    What does this have to do with his policies. I dont care if your democrat or republican, if you know how to lead and have good policies I really do not care about you groping a women 15 years ago. This has nothing to do with whether or not he will be a good president.

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  15. Ed DFWTX

    I think Cain needs to stop playing games and discuss the accusations from a reliable new organization. Not that comedy network – Fox News. I find it amuzing the GOP social holly rollers would stand behind a man that has committed a couple of sins and doesn't seem to have repented. Talk about your double standard. If Jesus were on earth today I don't think he'd be too happy with the GOP or their followers.

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Fortunately the American people will not allow Mr. Cain's bold "9-9-9 Plan", clear foreign policy vision and plans for energy independence to be overshadowed
    You should've stopped at Mr. Cain [is] bold.
    The rest of that sentence is pure b.s.
    Clear foreign policy vision Bwahahahahahahaha!.....Bazekustanistan BWAHAHAHAHAHA....Chinese nukes? Bwahahahahahaha!
    Oh lawd! Please! Stop! Bwahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  17. Eric

    From 9-9-9 to 86ed. Black man groping White Woman. Its over for him.

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  18. Lee

    Mhhmm for that happening she looked down at her own notes an awful lot

    November 7, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  19. Outthabox

    I wonder if he came up with the idea for meat lovers while he was CEO of Godfather's Pizza! Get tha butter ready, cause he is toast! Whether its true or not he's done. If it were false, then he would sue claiming it to be slanderous and defamation of character, therefore proving it to be done with malicious intent and untrue. However, he's not going to sue or even attempt to sue her. Not with her high priced attorney who would have a field day with him and his past (clears throat) career experience. Not to mention he would have to prove it is untrue, therefore opening him up to a countersuit if in fact it is. Wow! Gotta love the law! Its been fun Herm!

    November 7, 2011 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  20. Dave, Central Illinois

    It's a well known fact that Libs believe anything out of Hollywood and, in fact, take it as fact. So, it comes as no real suprise that the Libs commenting on this forum have condemned Cain because a celebrity lawyer says he's guilty. Libs are racists, greedy, hateful people.

    November 7, 2011 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    Smell that? That's thousands of Cain supporters filling their pants.

    November 7, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  22. SD

    Why wait 15 years to accuse Cain? Why wait for 2-3 other women to claim harassment? Because Sharon made the whole thing up, that's why. Sharon's from Chicago after all. Hey Sharon, you want Cain to just 'fess up? Tell us where you got those knife scars on your face. Drugs or alcohol?

    November 7, 2011 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  23. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Hey! Who took the pretty blonde lady's picture down?

    November 7, 2011 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  24. Anomic Office Drone

    Well, at least he has better taste than Clinton did.

    Ok. Bad joke. Want to hear a worse joke? Everything the Cain camp has done to respond to these allegations. Everything. His campaign in crisis mode looks like a bad SNL skit about a campaign in crisis mode. The only thing missing is Jimmy Fallon laughing in the middle and ruining the whole thing.

    November 7, 2011 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  25. Nick

    Take that Racist what you got left...the flip flopper Mormon ROMNEY.
    OBAMA 2012

    November 7, 2011 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
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