The PJ Tatler

Cain Rises, And Then He Gaffes

That seems to be the pattern here. A few weeks back, Herman Cain was on the upswing until he said he wouldn’t appoint any Muslims to his administration. He had to walk that back. That comment plus Bachmann’s strong debate performance and Perry’s entry relegated Cain back to the second tier of candidates.

Now, he’s on a strong upswing again, but he’s saying that as things stand now he can’t support Rick Perry if he is the GOP nominee.

Herman Cain said Wednesday that he would be unable to support Rick Perry for president if the Texas governor were to eventually win the party’s nomination.

“Today, I could not support Rick Perry as the nominee for a host of reasons,” Cain said on CNN.

He cited specifically Perry’s support for in-state tuition breaks for the children of illegal immigrants.

That’s silly. As governor, Mitt Romney did nothing about sanctuary cities and signed RomneyCare into law. He governed from the center-left and left no conservative legacy to speak of in Massachusetts. In his Senate campaign, he claimed to have been an independent during the Reagan years, implying that he’s no Reaganite. Why does he get a pass from Cain but Perry doesn’t? All of the candidates have an issue or two in their backgrounds. All of them. Declaring one of the front-runners off-limits is unwise. The goal is unseating Obama. Right now, Rick Perry is probably a little above a 50% shot to be the nominee. I expect that Cain will be walking this back before too long.

But this pattern does point to the problem of political inexperience. Having outsiders run for office is good and healthy, but they tend to be unprepared for the intense scrutiny of a national campaign. Obama benefited from a love affair with the press that no one else, perhaps especially Herman Cain, can expect to benefit from. Cain is a massive threat to the entire Democrat mentality; the media will do everything it can to shred him if he is the nominee. Saying provocative things like Cain’s comment is great for talk radio, which is the world Cain has been in for several years now, but it’s treacherous when you’re running for the highest office in the land. It tends to blow up the candidate who says it, not the one who was targeted.

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