The Note’s Must-Reads for Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Note’s Must-Reads are a round-up of today’s political headlines and stories from ABC News and the top U.S. newspapers. Posted Monday through Friday right here at

Compiled by ABC News Digital News Associates Jayce Henderson, Jacqueline Fernandez and Amanda VanAllen

PRESIDENT OBAMA: The Washington Post’s Dan Balz: “ Does Ohio hold the key to Obama’s 2012 hopes?” President Obama’s political advisers employed a creative and ultimately successful strategy on their way to victory in 2008. They enlarged the electoral map, pouring resources into states Democrats had lost for decades in an effort to provide multiple paths to the 270 electoral votes needed to win. The strategy was designed, in part, to avoid having the election decided in Ohio or Florida. LINK

HERMAN CAIN: ABC News’ Randy Kreider: “ Herman Cain Says ‘Democrat Machine’ Out to Get Him” Herman Cain issued his strongest denial yet of charges of sexual harassment during a 5 p.m. press conference in Phoenix, Arizona, saying that the harassment alleged by accuser Sharon Bialek “simply didn’t happen, and calling Bialek “a troubled woman” put forward by “the Democrat machine” to attack him.  “I have never acted inappropriately with anyone, period,” said Cain. “The charges and the accusations I absolutely reject: They simply didn’t happen. They simply did not happen.” LINK

The Hills’ Justin Sink: “ Defiant Cain denies allegations as another woman speaks publicly” Herman Cain on Tuesday flatly denied the sexual harassment allegations against him and said he would “absolutely” be willing to take a lie detector test. But the controversy seemed to deepen for Cain as Karen Kraushaar, a spokeswoman for the Treasury Department, came forward to confirm she had filed sexual harassment charges against the presidential candidate while they both worked for the National Restaurant Association. LINK

The New York Daily News’ Alison Gendar: “ Karen Kraushaar ‘had to leave her job because of Herman Cain’ as sex harass accuser comes forward” A second woman came forward Tuesday to put her name and face behind accusations that Herman Cain sexually harassed her when she worked for him. Karen Kraushaar, a spokeswoman for the Inspector General’s Office in the U.S Treasury Department and former journalist, is not one to make up anything, let alone serious allegations, friends and co-workers said Tuesday. LINK

The Los Angeles Times’ Robin Abcarian, Michael Finnegan and Tom Hamburger: “ Herman Cain answers sexual harassment allegations” The more forcefully Herman Cain fights to save his presidential campaign, the more events spiral out of the candidate’s control. After days in which he refused to discuss sexual harassment accusations against him, Cain reversed himself and starred in a nationally televised news conference at which he cast one of his accusers as “a troubled woman” and said he had “never acted inappropriately with anyone, period.” LINK

The New York Times’ Michael Shear and Jim Rutenberg: “ Cain Speaks Out to Deny Charges; 2nd Voice Heard” Herman Cain, the embattled Republican candidate for president, convened a nationally televised news conference Tuesday in which he insisted that he is innocent of all sexual harassment accusations, even as another woman put her name to allegations that he had approached her inappropriately. LINK

Politico’s Alexander Burns: “ Herman Cain: ‘There will probably be others’” Herman Cain predicted that more women would “probably” come forward to accuse him of sexual harassment – though not, he quickly added, because he’s guilty of that charge. “There will probably be others – not because I am aware of any, but because the machine to keep a businessman out of the White House is going to be relentless,” Cain said. “If they continue to come, I will continue to respond.” LINK

The Wall Street Journal’s Neil King Jr. and Andrew Morse: “ Cain: No Memory of Latest Accuser” Herman Cain said he has no memory of a Chicago woman who accused him of groping her 14 years ago, while a second woman stepped forward publicly Tuesday to put her name on allegations of sexual harassment that she had lodged in 1999. LINK

RICK PERRY: The Boston Globe’s Shira Schoenberg: “ Ex-Romney backer in N.H. now favors Perry” New Hampshire politician Ken Merrifield, who co-chaired Mitt Romney’s 2008 campaign in Merrimack County, is now supporting Romney’s rival in the presidential race, Texas Governor Rick Perry. Merrifield, the two-term mayor of Franklin, N.H., is well known in New Hampshire and has a history of local political involvement.   LINK

OTHER: The Washington Times’ David Sherfinski: “ GOP holds slight edge in deciding Va. Senate race” Republican hopes for an effective majority in the Senate and a historic power grab in Richmond were pinned late Tuesday on a central Virginia race in which a GOP challenger clung to an 86-vote lead with a final count not expected until Wednesday. LINK

USA Today’s William M. Welch: “ 2011 voters give a glimpse into 2012? Ohio voters rejected a new law sharply restricting public workers’ right to collective bargaining Tuesday, and Mississippi rejected an anti-abortion proposal that would have defined life as beginning at conception. Voters in Mississippi and Kentucky kept their governorships in the same party’s hands despite worries over a sluggish economy. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEOS:Herman Cain ‘Recalls’ Accuser Karen KraushaarLINKHerman Cain ‘Absolutely Rejects’ False AccusationsLINK

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