Saturday, December 3, 2011

Herman Cain Suspends 2012 Presidential Campaign

Herman Cain officially suspended his presidential campaign today at his new campaign headquarters based in Atlanta, Georgia.

The end to Herman Cain's campaign comes as both popular and financial support has waned during the onslaught of sexual indiscretion allegations against Herman Cain over the last month.

While many political commentators speculate who Herman Cain will ultimately endorse, the endorsement is only meaningful to anti-political establishment candidates (in other words, the anti-Mitt candidates) because Cain's supporters were the anti-establishment, outside-Washington backers from the beginning and would be unlikely to support the Romney campaign even if Herman Cain endorsed Mitt Romney.

So that leaves only consistently two double digit polling contenders: Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul.  

Never-mind the very peculiar uptalk by both the left and right establishment major news outlets about Jon Huntsman today, who has been trailing in the polls simply because he has not been able convince a strong enough Republican base that he is actually a conservative and will not sell out the U.S. to China.

Huntsman, the former Obama ambassador to China, consistently makes statements during GOP debates that, in one form or another, "We should not start a trade war with China."  Huntsman's answers to trade policy questions have been repeatedly met with overwhelming boos from the audiences attending those debates.

There is no question that Newt Gingrich wants Herman Cain's endorsement like a dog wants a walk when his owner comes home from work.  But a Cain endorsement may not do much for Gingrich.  Presumably, voters who saw Gingrich as their second choice already moved to Newt's camp, so an endorsement would do little to push Gingrich's numbers any higher.

The other presumption being, is that Cain supporters not only gave up on Cain because of the damaged image of the sexual allegations, but that some supporters were actually turned off by the allegations themselves.  In other words, some Cain supporters will not accept the endorsement of a known adulterer (Newt) by an accused adulterer (Cain).

Ron Paul and Mitt Romney have not appeared as anxious as New Gingrich to obtain Cain's endorsement.  Perhaps, in a strange self-fulling prophecy kind of way [or off-the-record-leak], Cain will endorse Huntsman simply because Cain's endorsement is pretty much a throw-away endorsement at this point.  Any of the major candidates remaining would find just as many negatives with a Cain endorsement as positives.