McLEAN, Va. – Herman Cain preempted a policy speech here today with a defensive analysis of the state of his campaign amid allegations that he sexually harassed subordinates a decade ago.
“Someone made the observation that a successful campaign goes through four stages,” Cain told the Northern Virginia Technology Council. “The first phase is they ignore you. … Second phase, they ridicule you. And some of the pundits have described the Cain candidacy for president as entertaining. …
“The third phase, they try to destroy you. Well, I got a little of that this week,” he said before describing the fourth phase as being accepted.
Whether he gets there remains to be seen, but the embattled GOP presidential candidate remained defiant today. ”There are factions that are trying to destroy me, personally as well as this campaign,” he said. “But there is a force greater, there is a force at work here much greater than those that would try to destroy me and destroy this campaign and this journey to the White House.
“And that force is called the ‘voice of the people.’ That’s why we’re doing as well as we are in this campaign thus far.”
Cain eventually went on to discuss the country’s economic woes and how he, as president, would remedy the problem with his 9-9-9 tax policy. Cain credited his unconventional style, evidenced by his unconventional campaign and unconventional chief of staff, with the ability to turn around the nation.
For the first time, Cain described China not only as an economic threat but as a national security threat. Answering a question on how to compete with China, Cain said, “I see China as a national security threat. They long for a military like ours. So for us to think that if we just stay static, that they’re going to stop trying to develop their military might. I think that is naive.”
In response to a question about attracting the moderate vote, Cain said all his positions, including 9-9-9 and his foreign policy strategy of “peace through strength and clarity,” had already struck a chord with that bloc.
“A good solution transcends political ideology,” he said. “Enough people in this country would like to see stuff fixed.
“Putting bold solutions on the table is what’s resonating with independents and moderates.”