Cain says he was 'falsely accused' of harassment

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Registered: 04-07-2002
Cain says he was 'falsely accused' of harassment
6
Mon, 10-31-2011 - 12:45pm
Cain says he was 'falsely accused' of harassment

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said Monday he was "falsely accused" of sexual harassment while he led the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s.

By KASIE HUNT

Associated Press

WASHINGTON —

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said Monday he was "falsely accused" of sexual harassment while he led the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s.

Cain was responding to a Politico report that said the trade group settled complaints from at least two women that Cain had engaged in inappropriate sexual behavior.

Cain told Fox News he has never sexually harassed anyone and that he was "falsely accused." He said investigations into any complaints found that they were "baseless."

"I've never sexually harassed anyone," he said. "And yes, I was falsely accused while I was at the National Restaurant Association, and I say falsely because it turned out after the investigation to be baseless."

But he also said he had no idea whether the trade association provided financial settlements to the women who complained, as Politico reported. "I hope it wasn't for much, because I was never aware of it," Cain said.

Cain said he has not been accused of sexually inappropriate behavior in any other context. "Absolutely not," he said when asked if more reports of harassment could surface.

In a written statement, the National Restaurant Association refused to comment on a personnel matter.

At an event in Washington Monday morning, the former businessman said he would further discuss the allegations later in the day while appearing at the National Press Club.

"I will take all your arrows," Cain said.

Cain's campaign was in full-scale damage control mode in the wake of a Politico report late Sunday that said Cain had been accused of sexual harassment toward at least two female employees. The report said the women signed agreements with the restaurant group that gave them five-figure financial payouts to leave the association and barred them from discussing their departures. Neither woman was identified.

The report was based on anonymous sources and, in one case, what the publication said was a review of documentation that described the allegations and the resolution.

"We weren't going to go and chase anonymous sources," Cain said on Fox.

Cain - a self-styled outsider relatively new to the national stage - is facing a new level of scrutiny after a burst of momentum in the race for the GOP presidential nomination. He's been steadily at or near the top of national surveys and polls in early presidential nominating states, competitive with former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. The former pizza company executive has been pointing to his long record in business to argue that he has the credentials needed to be president during a time of economic strife.

Cain has stumbled since his rise in the polls. He has made statements on abortion, the treatment of terrorism suspects and placing an electrified fence along the U.S.-Mexico border that he's later had to clarify.

It's unclear what the allegations will mean to Cain's political prospects. The Georgia businessman regularly criticizes the mainstream media for writing off his candidacy. "Message is more powerful than media," he says on the campaign trail.

And among conservative voters - who are distrustful of the media - the charges could galvanize support for him.

A message seeking comment from Peter Kilgore, listed on the National Restaurant Association website as its chief legal counsel, was not immediately returned.

edited to add: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/politics/2016653414_apuscainharassment.html

 nwtreehugger  

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-03-2009

Either Cain is reckless and thoughtless in making public statements (NOT a good trait in a president as we learned from Dumbya); or he is covering up.

Jabberwocka

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-18-2000
"I put up with crud then that would be grounds for decking somebody or reporting harrassment today."

I hear you. Things have change a great deal for the better.

 


Photobucket&nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-30-2002

Me too. I worked in the auto industry, where they believed all women should basically be spread eagle, on the hood of a car, in a thong.



iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2002
Yep, I worked in the insurance industry...good ole' boys club basically. Even an nuclear bomb couldn't blast through the glass ceilings they had in place. I was lucky, for the most part because I worked for a man who was a truly good man. But, there were a few others in the office who made comments that were totally out of line.

I heard on the news this a.m. that the attorney for one of the women is trying to get the agreement nullified because they feel Cain broke the agreement they had & that he's not telling the entire truth. I hope that they do.

 nwtreehugger  

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-18-2000
Herman Cain, Clarence Thomas, and sexual harassment

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-15471756

News of old claims of sexual harassment against Herman Cain reveal how much has changed since the 1990s - and what has stayed the same.

There's nothing new about a sexual harassment suit in the hallowed halls of Washington. What's rarer is a black conservative garnering national headlines. So it's no surprise that past sexual harassment allegations against Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain has conservative pundits recalling the last time a black man with political ambitions faced such charges - the confirmation hearings of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

As Talking Points Memo notes, the rhetoric on the right regarding Mr Cain is incredibly similar to the rhetoric that was used to defend Justice Thomas - that the liberal media is trying to take down a conservative black man, that political correctness has run amok, that the women in question are either crazy or out for a payday.

It's a reminder that though it's been 20 years since the Thomas hearings, some things have changed - but much has remained the same.

A changing world

The evidence of financial settlements paid out to two women complaining of harassment from Mr Cain is just now surfacing. But, according to Politico, the complaints were originally made while Mr Cain was president of the National Restaurant Association, sometime between 1996 and 1999.

That was less than 10 years after the Thomas case, but a totally different era in terms of sexual harassment in the US workplace.

In 1991, during the Justice Thomas confirmation hearings, public opinion was very much in favour of the judge, says Jennifer A Drobac, professor at Indiana University School of Law . (Me: At the time I believed every word of

 


Photobucket&nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-30-2002

"The public attitude towards the hearing reflected common defence strategies in sexual harassment cases: she's nutty, she's slutty, she's a gold-digger," she says.

Only a year later, views had shifted. "Most public opinion was sided with Anita Hill."****

Because every sister, wife and daughter that had a career finally told their brothers, fathers, and husbands about the crap they were dealing with, in order to have a job. So many of us had dealt with it ,so much, and so long, that we considered it "normal" until the Hill hearings brought out the fact that it was wrong and we shouldn't have to put up with it just to have a job.