ABC News’ Z. Byron Wolf (@zbyronwolf) reports:
Set your clock. Tomorrow, a year out from election day 2012, ABC News and Yahoo will do an unprecedented coast-to-coast set of live interviews with each of the major candidates running for the Republican nomination.
Each of the interviews will be streamed live on ABC News and Yahoo. The network and the Internet giant are online news partners and streamed a live interview of President Barack Obama by ABC’s George Stephanopoulos last month.
Here’s the rundown for Tuesday’s political marathon -
Jon Huntsman in Coral Gables, Florida at 8:10 am ET (interviewed by Sharyn Alfonsi)
Michele Bachmann in Charleston, SC at 9:30 am ET (interviewed by Ron Claiborne)
Ron Paul in Clute, Texas at 11 am ET (interviewed by Terry Moran)
Rick Perry in Austin, Texas at 11:15 pm ET (interviewed by Christiane Amanpour)
Mitt Romney in Chicago, Illinois at 12:15pm ET (interviewed by George Stephanopoulos)
Rick Santorum in Manchester, New Hampshire at 2:00 pm ET (interviewed by John Berman)
Herman Cain in Scottsdale, Arizona at 2:30 pm ET (interviewed by Jonathan Karl)
Newt Gingrich in Washington, DC at 3:00 pm ET (interviewed by Jake Tapper)
A woman from Chicago went public today, accusing Herman Cain of inappropriate behavior – touching of the kind we don’t describe in detail on a family blog.
It was an involved story from a woman who had lost her job and was trying to get it back at the National Restaurant Association, where he was in charge. Standing next to her was the nation’s official scorned woman attorney – Gloria Allred. She lives in Los Angeles, but Allred is no stranger to politics. Remember involvement in the Anthony Weiner scandal? Or her press conference with Meg Whitman’s former maid?
The woman accusing Cain is Sharon Bialek, now a home maker, but then a former employee of a foundation overseen by the National Restaurant Association.
“You want a job, right?” she said he asked of her, when she wouldn’t engage in sexual activity with him. http://abcn.ws/vCCbnU
Cain campaign spokesman J.D. Gordon immediately responded with a statement that said, “All allegations of harassment against Mr. Cain are completely false. Mr. Cain has never harassed anyone.”
Cain is still atop (or near the top) of presidential preference polls, including ABC’s, among Republicans. But this latest accusation – the fourth, but the first coming directly from a woman in public, could be more difficult for him to ignore.
Cain was speaking in San Francisco this afternoon. He’ll be on Kimmel tonight and tomorrow ABC’s Jonathan Karl will have the first live news interview of Kimmel since Bialek’s press conference. And mid-day he released a new web video, this one of Middle America farmers frustrated by EPA attempts to regulate methane emitted from cows and dust kicked up by farm operations.
There’s another reason, besides ABC’s politics interview extravaganza, to pay attention to tomorrow. It’s election day 2011. ABC’s Huma Khan has a guide of what to look out for: “One year away from the 2012 election, voters across the country will cast their ballots Tuesday for issues that could have implications beyond the next election cycle. From weakening labor laws to defining a human being, multiple ballot initiatives have garnered national attention and could boost voter turnout, which is typically low in an off-year election.”
The major issues: include “personhood” in Mississippi, collective bargaining in Ohio, governor’s mansions in Kentucky and Mississippi and the balance of power in the swing state of Virginia. http://abcn.ws/tBUpmV
Super Committee Smell Test – Count Chuck Schumer, the Senate’s No. 3 Democrat, among those who think the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction is unlikely to succeed because of a deadlock over Republican opposition to tax revenues. ABC’s John Parkinson and Sunlen Miller report that with the 12-member bipartisan committee’s Nov. 23 deadline looming, Sen. Charles Schumer, the Democrats’ primary messenger as the Senate Democratic Policy Chair, told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that super committee would likely fail to strike an agreement on a plan to slice $1.5 trillion from the deficit over the next 10 years “because our Republican colleagues have said no net revenues.”
“The American people are beginning to sniff this,” Schumer, D-N.Y., said. “They’re beginning to sniff that the other side has dug in and is not compromising.”
In an email titled, “What’s Sen. Schumer Sniffin’?” Michael Steel, press secretary for House Speaker John Boehner, disagreed with Schumer’s contention that Republicans oppose all new revenues. http://abcn.ws/u8dPUW
The Romney Iowa Question – Mitt Romney barnstormed back into Iowa, not his wheelhouse, this week. Radio Iowa’s O.Kay Henderson told ABC’s Top Line that its an important move for him, since he’s near the top of polls there. She said a second loss in Iowa – the state he spent $10 million to finish second in four years ago – would slow his early momentum, while a win could essentially end the primary season before it starts in Romney’s favor.
While Romney has barely campaigned in Iowa this year, he still holds onto a reservoir of support from his efforts four years ago, Radio Iowa’s O. Kay Henderson told us on ABC’s “Top Line” today. http://abcn.ws/vMp2Is
Top Line also got the pitch from Christopher Lee for an infrastructure bank like the one Democrats and President Obama say will help spur job growth by streamlining public works. http://abcn.ws/sVC5Mt
Bachmann’s Conviction Core – Perhaps seeking to distinguish herself from Mitt Romney, assailed on the right and left for having no “core,” Michele Bachmann wants to talk and write bout her own. In a speech titled “Core of Conviction,” which is also the title of Bachmann’s new book, scheduled for release Nov. 21, Bachmann found ways to work in the phrase, or something similar to it, no less than five times, according to ABC’s Russell Goldman.
Invoking the states’ rights of the 10th Amendment and the morality of the 10th Commandment, Bachmann accused the president of legislating from the Oval Office and warned that “America needs to open its eyes.” http://abcn.ws/rre5lG
Calling the U.N. a “threat to the American family,” Bachmann said that if elected she would “withdraw the signature of the United States from this treaty and every other unratified U.N. treaty of this type.”
Texas Justice – Another controversial death penalty case is brewing in Texas as Henry “Hank” Skinner races in both state and federal court for the chance to test crime scene DNA evidence.
Here’s our report from Ariane de Vogue: “Today, lawyers for Skinner, whose execution is set for November 9, asked Texas Gov. Rick Perry to issue a 30-day reprieve in the case. Prosecutors argue that Skinner-who came within hours of death last year- is trying to delay justice. They say that Skinner’s lawyers made the conscious decision at trial to forgo the DNA testing because they feared it would further implicate their client. Texas officials say that Skinner shouldn’t be able to demand the testing post-conviction. But lawyers for Skinner are appealing the decision.”
“We are confident,” said Rob Owen, “that upon such careful review, the court will conclude that DNA testing is necessary.” http://abcn.ws/u2duiy
U.S. Justice – The U.S Supreme Court declined today to grant the appeal of a Texas death row inmate who claims race was improperly taken into consideration during the sentencing phase of his trial. Duane Buck’s guilt for the death of his former girlfriend was never at issue, but Buck sought a new sentencing hearing because of testimony that contended that he posed a greater danger because he is black. On Sept. 15, the court had halted Buck’s scheduled execution in order to review his case. But today, over the dissent of at least two justices, the court declined to rule in Buck’s favor. http://abcn.ws/s5wCF8
Gold Cards for Vets – ABC’s Devin Dwyer reports that President Obama today announced three initiatives to help unemployed military veterans, including the issuance of a “veterans gold card” that will provide access to case management and job counseling to help in finding work. The unemployment rate among post-9/11 veterans stood at 12.1 percent in October, according to the Labor Department, a level Obama says is “not right” and “doesn’t make sense.” http://abcn.ws/vWkzEz