The first woman to go public with accusations of sexual harassment against Herman Cain said today that his decision to drop out of the presidential race was a "vindication," but that she was saddened that the former Republican frontrunner "has tried to place the blame elsewhere."
Sharon Bialek said during a Chicago press conference with attorney Gloria Allred that it was wrong for Herman Cain claim that he suspended his campaign because charges of sexual harassment and a long-term extramarital affair had gotten in the way of his message.
"Herman Cain got in the way of his own message," said Bialek, 50. "His past and his unwillingness to tell the truth got in the way of his own message. He has no one to blame but himself."
Said Bialek, "This is kind of my vindication. . . . I feel I have impacted his race for president."
Bialek said she doesn't feel sorry for Cain, but she does feel sorry for his wife Gloria. Watching the Saturday press conference during which Cain announced the suspension of his campaign, said Bialek, "I was more focused on Gloria, his wife. I felt very sad for her. She probably wasn't aware of this. I felt sad for him that he couldn't bring himself to admit to her some of the things that he had done in the past."
Cain suspended his campaign after Atlanta businesswoman Ginger White came forward to allege that he had carried on a 13-year extramarital affair with her.
"With a lot of prayer and soul searching, I am suspending my presidential campaign, because of the continued distraction, the continued hurt on me and my family," said Cain in Atlanta, with his wife by his side.
Cain asserted that the allegations of an affair were untrue, using the words "false accusations" three times. He said that the distraction of the accusations hurt him, his family, his wife, and the American people -- "because you are being denied solutions to our problems."
Cain's attorney, Lin Wood, has acknowledged, however, that Cain had given White financial help up until "a week or ten days" before she went public.
White said she was motivated to speak in part by what she felt were Cain's disparaging remarks about the women who had accused him of sexual harassment.
During Monday's press conference, Bialek said that Cain's denial of sexual harassment allegations had inspired her to go public with her own claim.