Cain clarifies again: Abortion shouldn’t be legal, but some families might decide to break the law anyway

posted at 5:10 pm on October 21, 2011 by Allahpundit

A better answer than yesterday’s spin attempt but Mediaite is right that it still doesn’t jibe with what he said to Piers Morgan. Then:

No, it comes down to is, it’s not the government’s role — or anybody else’s role — to make that decision. Secondly, if you look at the statistical incidents, you’re not talking about that big a number. So what I’m saying is, it ultimately gets down to a choice that that family or that mother has to make. Not me as president. Not some politician. Not a bureaucrat. It gets down to that family. And whatever they decide, they decide. I shouldn’t try to tell them what decision to make for such a sensitive decision…

The government shouldn’t be trying to tell people everything to do, especially when it comes to a social decision that they need to make.

Now:

Look, abortion should not be legal. That is clear. But if that family makes the decision to break the law, that’s that family’s decision. That’s all I’m trying to say.

Big difference between (a) the government shouldn’t tell you what to do about “sensitive” social decisions and (b) the government should tell you what to do by criminalizing one of your options. In fact, per Christian Heinze at the The Hill and Philip Klein at the Examiner, even in today’s answer there’s an element of choice insofar as Cain suggests that a pregnant woman might end up breaking the law to get an illegal abortion. That’s, er, true — some of them would end up doing that — but it’s an odd note for a man in his position to sound. Rarely do would-be presidents acknowledge lawbreaking as an option in any context, however disapprovingly. (Klein, applying Cain’s logic, goofs, “Theft should not be legal, but if a family decides they have to steal, that’s their decision.”) And rarely do pro-lifers suggest that criminal penalties might not be much of a deterrent. The whole point of the movement is to de-normalize abortion itself, not to lock up practitioners as punishment for what they’ve done. The more “normal” it is to carry out illegal abortions, whatever the penalty later, the greater the setback to the pro-life cause. Cain inadvertently injects a bit of that normalization here.

The good news is, now that he’s spent two days answering questions on this, sheer media fatigue with the subject will probably mean no new interrogations about it next week. New pressure will have to come from the other candidates like Michele Bachmann, who called his position “pro-abortion”(!) earlier today. Exit question: Will any of this end up doing damage to Cain’s polls? My experience with Cain fans in the comments here is that they’re extremely — extremely — loyal. Not quite as loyal as Palinistas are to Palin, maybe, but they’re getting there. Patience.


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Big question: would conservatives be more satisfied if he just answered every question by repeating “9-9-9″ several times and smiling?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 5:54 PM

They want perfection and purity.

Knucklehead on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

SirGawain on October 21, 2011 at 5:35 PM

Yep, you nailed it. That’s exactly what this is like.

I can’t help but notice that the Cain criticism really exploded after Sarah’s announcement. Not making an accusation, but just observing a coincidence.

Well, no, clearly you are making an accusation. Here’s a genuine coincidence, though: Palin dropped out right around the time Cain’s big poll surge began. He became a frontrunner so people started looking more closely at his 9-9-9 plan. And then this week he gave that ridiculous answer on Gitmo and has been struggling to be clear on abortion for days. I can’t travel back in time and spread these posts out over the past few months so that there’s less of a “coincidence.”

Exactly. This isn’t a guy who has spent his life preparing to be president, and, I thought, that’s what conservatives have been wanting.

There are 300 million people who fit that description. Many of them, including you and other HA commenters here, could have answered a basic question on abortion like the one Cain got in a much clearer, more fluid way. How steep of a grading curve are we talking about here just because a guy isn’t a professional politician? I like the fact that Cain isn’t scripted. I don’t like the fact that it takes him two days to get an answer straight on abortion.

It seems like AP and some others are trying to suggest that merely designating it as illegal it would stop and no one would choose to seek an illegal abortion. Further, that recognizing that people will choose to break the law, somehow makes breaking the law “normal”; that’s just not logical.

I specifically said in the post that abortion wouldn’t stop if we made it illegal. But Cain’s also being a bit too cavalier in suggesting that it’s up to the family whether they want to follow through with it or not. Imagine if Obama went on TV and said, “I’m glad murder is illegal, but if you want to murder someone and risk the consequences, that’s your decision.” Murders would still happen regardless, but we’d all find that statement a bit too cavalier and equivocal if he said it.

Allahpundit on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

Rarely do would-be presidents acknowledge lawbreaking as an option in any context, however disapprovingly. (Klein, applying Cain’s logic, goofs, “Theft should not be legal, but if a family decides they have to steal, that’s their decision.”)

Not presidential material!

AnotherOpinion on October 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM

He’s articulate, but he appears to not anticipate key policy questions before they are asked.

a capella on October 21, 2011 at 5:56 PM

If he’s so articulate, why does no one ever understand what he is trying to say?

steebo77 on October 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM

Entrapment end of story.

Retreat, regroup, rethink and attack, hit’em on the end, hit’em hard, when they turn to attack leave, regroup…

Speakup on October 21, 2011 at 6:01 PM

It wasn’t a trick question and it wasn’t an unexpected question.

You are not going to run for president without getting asked about abortion at one time or another. He ran in 2000 and got asked about abortion and he is being asked now as well.

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Mr. Cain would probably appoint judges to who were indeed inclined to overturn Roe V. Wade.

That doesn’t change the fact, that according to the Constitution, the President administers the law, Congress makes the law, and the Judiciary interprets the law.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:07 PM

Say, will Cain defend DOMA? Or will his, “they can break the law if they want” logic apply? Just how close to Obama is he anyway?

AnotherOpinion on October 21, 2011 at 6:07 PM

Big question: would conservatives be more satisfied if he just answered every question by repeating “9-9-9″ several times and smiling?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 5:54 PM

I would be satisfied if Cain didn’t have to keep correcting every other statement he makes.

Is that too much to ask?

portlandon on October 21, 2011 at 6:09 PM

They want perfection and purity.

Knucklehead on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

I’ll take Newt — wives and all. I can settle on Perry, too.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:09 PM

Maybe Cain suffers from trying to over-explain things.
If he sticks to unapologetic conservatism (both social and fiscal) he can win the whole thing, but he does need to simplify and solidify his message. I’m also wondering if getting too deep into policy at this point might be a mistake. This stage of the primaries might be better focused on principles and character.

neuquenguy on October 21, 2011 at 6:09 PM

If he’s so articulate, why does no one ever understand what he is trying to say?

steebo77 on October 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM

Probably because A) the media is presenting irrelevant hypotheticals and B) people are taking his comments out of their context and C) inserting his comments into inappropriate contexts.

——————————-

Cain’s comments flow fine if left in a logical framework

The 30 second soundbite is antithetical to a logical debate.

Cain’s comments flow badly if presented in inappropriate emotional contexts.

The 30 second soundbite is designed to appeal emotionally.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:11 PM

I really like you, Mr. Coleman. You go out of your way everyday to find the most shameless ways to defend the indefensible. You, sir, have a very, very bright future in Washington.

Some of us would like Herman to appoint pro-life judges to overturn Roe v. Wade. Sadly, however, Cain said he believes the government has no role in such matters, and Cain would most likely appoint judges that share his view on abortion.

Fail.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Just so you understand Jason Coleman:

Like most invertebrates, Punchenko has an attention span no greater than 6 hours. There is a fortunate evolutionary adaptation that allows him and his kind to survive however, in that their slippery, amorphous bodies mean they never have much need to support anything, and once squeezed in one direction they will haplessly accustom themselves to whatever new area they have been relocated to. They then forget they were ever pushed in that direction, because, again, their attention span does not exceed 6 hours.

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:11 PM

They want perfection and purity.

Knucklehead on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

I don’t want perfection. I was a big Palin supporter, remember?

portlandon on October 21, 2011 at 6:11 PM

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:00 PM

We have allowed 50 million babies to be aborted legally. I am not sure if police, lawyers, judges etc would actually prosecute future cases if SCOTUS overturned Roe and made it illegal again. I get that those 50 million babies deaths can’t be prosecuted.

I think you would have demonstrations at every courthouse making it impossible for them to prosecute all the other cases they have.

Look, it makes me miserable. I think abortion is wrong, but I understand Cain’s dilemma.

journeyintothewhirlwind on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Mr. Cain would probably appoint judges to who were indeed inclined to overturn Roe V. Wade.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:07 PM

He would probably isn’t good enough and his comments as of late make it more than likely he would not appoint such judges. We can’t afford weak candidates like Cain right now.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

In the meantime, some news from the real world:

Cain tops field again in Nevada GOP straw poll

“The good news continued for Herman Cain Friday, as the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO won the Western Republican Leadership Conference straw poll of GOP presidential contenders, edging out former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich — and leaving Texas Gov. Rick Perry in a distant fifth place.”

whatcat on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Like most invertebrates, Punchenko has an attention span no greater than 6 hours. There is a fortunate evolutionary adaptation that allows him and his kind to survive however, in that their slippery, amorphous bodies mean they never have much need to support anything, and once squeezed in one direction they will haplessly accustom themselves to whatever new area they have been relocated to. They then forget they were ever pushed in that direction, because, again, their attention span does not exceed 6 hours.

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:11 PM

You have me confused with Mr. Cain — although I don’t think Mr. Cain has the slippery or amorphous quite down yet. Give him time, I’m sure he’ll be able to dupe us just like he dupes you.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:18 PM

We can’t afford weak candidates like Cain right now.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Do let me know when a strong candidate shows up.

CrankyTRex on October 21, 2011 at 6:21 PM

Look, murder should not be legal. That is clear. But if that family makes the decision to break the law, that’s that family’s decision. That’s all I’m trying to say.

Mr. Cain, meet Casey Anthony.

unclesmrgol on October 21, 2011 at 6:22 PM

It wasn’t a trick question and it wasn’t an unexpected question.

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 6:05 PM

“So are you saying that in that situation [if abortion were illegal], that if a family chose to make that decision, that it would be an illegal abortion that they would need to seek?”

That’s a trick question.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:22 PM

PawlentyBachmann Perry Gingrich ’12!
Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:18 PM

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:23 PM

Look, murder should not be legal. That is clear. But if that family makes the decision to break the law, that’s that family’s decision. That’s all I’m trying to say.

unclesmrgol on October 21, 2011 at 6:22 PM

Is it not? Seems pretty clear that the criminal makes the decision to break the law.

Or do you suggest that criminals knowingly break the law through no fault of their own?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:24 PM

He would probably isn’t good enough and his comments as of late make it more than likely he would not appoint such judges. We can’t afford weak candidates like Cain right now.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

You have no basis to make that statement.

I on the other hand have years of his pro-life strict-constitutionalist statements as well as his previous and continued support for certain SCOTUS judges on my side.

If you feel you have some basis for your statement, state it.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Look, he is a good guy but he is not knowledgeable on a lot of issues and he is trying to appeal to everybody on hot button issues. He ends up looking bad to both sides. Next please.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 6:29 PM

“So are you saying that in that situation [if abortion were illegal], that if a family chose to make that decision, that it would be an illegal abortion that they would need to seek?”

That’s a trick question.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:22 PM

You are trying too hard.

He is incoherent.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JD-sBPBzpmE

Cain: I’m pro-life from conception, yes.
Stossel: Any cases where it should be legal?
Cain: I don’t think government should make that decision.
Stossel: People should be free to abort a baby?
Cain: I support life from conception. No, people shouldn’t just be free to abort because if we don’t protect the sanctity of life from conception, we will also start to play God relative to life at the end of life.
Stossel: So I’m confused on what your position is.
Cain: My position is I’m pro-life. Period.
Stossel: If a woman is raped, she should not be allowed to end the pregnancy?
Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice. I support life from conception.
Stossel: So abortion should be legal?
Cain: No, abortion should not be legal. I believe in the sanctity of life.
Stossel: I’m not getting it. I’m not understanding it. If it’s her choice, that means it’s legal.
Cain: No. I don’t believe a woman should have an abortion. Does that help to clear it up?
Stossel: Even if she is raped?
Cain: Even if she is raped or the victim of incest because there are other options. We must protect the sanctity of life and I have always believed that.

There were no trick questions here.

Q: If a woman is raped, she should not be allowed to end the pregnancy?

A: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice.

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 6:31 PM

PawlentyBachmann Perry Gingrich ’12!
Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:18 PM

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:23 PM

OK… I was a huge, huge Bachmann basher. I didn’t like Perry at first either until I saw him on the stump and began reading what he has done in Texas. Yeah, I’m a Perry/Gingrich person — I’ll admit that.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:31 PM

There. Ya happy now, AP?..here they come again: honda, piglet,punch and girly.

gracie on October 21, 2011 at 5:33 PM

Living rent-free in your head, obviously.

Has this site been re-named TheCainTrain.com or something?

Newsflash: People who don’t like Cain have as much right to be here as those who do, unless and until management determines otherwise.

On the topic of the thread (this is my first post on this one, after all): Cain seems to continually mold and adjust his positions. It signals that he either a) doesn’t really know what he believes on a number of topics, or b) is pretty bad at explaining himself.

Not good.

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:31 PM

You have no basis to make that statement.

I on the other hand have years of his pro-life strict-constitutionalist statements as well as his previous and continued support for certain SCOTUS judges on my side.

If you feel you have some basis for your statement, state it.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Stossel.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:32 PM

I on the other hand have years of his pro-life strict-constitutionalist statements as well as his previous and continued support for certain SCOTUS judges on my side.
Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Major difference between shooting from the sidelines, and being in the mix.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 6:32 PM

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 6:31 PM

That is simply dizzying.

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:33 PM

I think you would have demonstrations at every courthouse making it impossible for them to prosecute all the other cases they have.

Look, it makes me miserable. I think abortion is wrong, but I understand Cain’s dilemma.

journeyintothewhirlwind on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Are you suggesting that we make law based on the appearance of protestors?

Almost every capital murder case for which the death penalty is sought sees protestors, should we abandon the death penalty because of protestors?

Do you also suggest we all open our wallets and hand them over to the OWS crowd?

I think Cain is showing remarkable fortitude in this regard. He’s not offering platitudes and speaking in emotional appeals a la Clinton, Obama and even the Bush’s. He could take the easy way out and go full-retard-politician, but he’s not, he’s standing up and answering even the unfair questions straight on,54444 without deflection.

I think that his doing that is what’s throwing certain media, bloggers and commenters into fits of illogical false arguments and ad hominem slanders.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:34 PM

There. Ya happy now, AP?..here they come again: honda, piglet,punch and girly.

gracie on October 21, 2011 at 5:33 PM

Woo! It’s a Pile on Cain Paaar-tay! Here, Gracie — indulge in some cake baked to look like Herman’s Cain Train derailing and exploding.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:34 PM

Major difference between shooting from the sidelines, and being in the mix.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 6:32 PM

Major difference between being under the lights witht he whole world watching what you say second by second and having a chance to thoughtfully articulate your ideas on paper, with editing.

The latter is how actual policies are implemented, unless you’re a Democrat passing things in order to find out what’s in them.

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Major difference between shooting from the sidelines, and being in the mix.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 6:32 PM

By being in the mix, are you suggesting that only our entrenched aristocratic political class is qualified to appoint judges?

David Souter ring any bells for you?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:36 PM

So many people tried comparing Cain to Reagan, but what made Reagan so effective a communicator was his moral clarity. Aside from abortion, an issue every Republican or Democrat should have an answer for even if they are running for dog catcher, he is also stumbling on 999.

Daemonocracy on October 21, 2011 at 6:37 PM

Stossel.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:32 PM

And? If your going to make an appeal to authority, at least quote.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Major difference between being under the lights witht he whole world watching what you say second by second and having a chance to thoughtfully articulate your ideas on paper, with editing.

BKennedy on October 21, 2011 at 6:35 PM

More shameless excuses that make Cain look thrice as bad.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:41 PM

Allahpundit on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

He’s charming and says funny things. Apparently that is enough to run for President.

His personal accomplishments are without question impressive, but he is looking like a Sharon Angle instead of a Rand Paul.

Daemonocracy on October 21, 2011 at 6:41 PM

And? If your going to make an appeal to authority, at least quote.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Heh heh… OK:

You are trying too hard.

He is incoherent.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JD-sBPBzpmE

Cain: I’m pro-life from conception, yes.
Stossel: Any cases where it should be legal?
Cain: I don’t think government should make that decision.
Stossel: People should be free to abort a baby?
Cain: I support life from conception. No, people shouldn’t just be free to abort because if we don’t protect the sanctity of life from conception, we will also start to play God relative to life at the end of life.
Stossel: So I’m confused on what your position is.
Cain: My position is I’m pro-life. Period.
Stossel: If a woman is raped, she should not be allowed to end the pregnancy?
Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice. I support life from conception.
Stossel: So abortion should be legal?
Cain: No, abortion should not be legal. I believe in the sanctity of life.
Stossel: I’m not getting it. I’m not understanding it. If it’s her choice, that means it’s legal.
Cain: No. I don’t believe a woman should have an abortion. Does that help to clear it up?
Stossel: Even if she is raped?
Cain: Even if she is raped or the victim of incest because there are other options. We must protect the sanctity of life and I have always believed that.

There were no trick questions here.

Q: If a woman is raped, she should not be allowed to end the pregnancy?

A: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice.

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 6:31 PM

There’s video, too. :-)

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:43 PM

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:36 PM

I am stating that it doesn’t matter what his statements were in the past. They count now and he is blowing it.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 6:43 PM

but what made Reagan so effective a communicator was his moral clarity.

His years as a paid spokesman and actor of course had nothing to do with his being a great communicator, right?

How do you get more morally clear than:

“I am pro-life from conception, no exceptions
“I will sign any legislation to defund Planned Parenthood.”
“My position is – No Abortion”

If you’re looking for moral clarity, Cain’s about the top dog in the race.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:46 PM

I patiently await for Jason Coleman — political strategist/communications extraordinaire — to *clarify* Cain’s Stossle statements for us all.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:46 PM

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:43 PM

I don’t see any statements there that are inconsistent with a pro-life position, do you?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:47 PM

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 5:23 PM

This is really about abortion anymore. It’s about the flip-flops and the absolute incoherency of Cain’s position. What else is he going to flip-flop on? That’s what this is all about.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on October 21, 2011 at 6:48 PM

P.S. — Ellis Hennican’s shocked face in that Stossel clip is *priceless*.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:48 PM

This is really not about abortion anymore

FIFM.

Aslans Girl on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

No GOP POTUS candidate who is “generally” electable will admit to overturning Roe v. Wade, nor will they legislatively. Social issue voters need to accept this and move on. It is foolish to die on the “Roe” hill…unless, of course, the social voters want to guarantee obake another 4 years to totally ruin the country. If he is re-elected, THAT will happen.

ladyingray on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

How can he not have a definite stance on this issue?

WisCon on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

P.S. — Ellis Hennican’s shocked face in that Stossel clip is *priceless*.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:48 PM

I had the same expression on my own face watching the Stossel clip.

Aslans Girl on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

WisCon on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

His position is “no abortion”.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:51 PM

New poll just out in Iowa taken yesterday:

Herman Cain (37 percent)
Mitt Romney (27 percent)
Ron Paul (11.5 percent)
Newt Gingrich (7.7 percent)
Rick Perry (5.9 percent)
Michele Bachmann (3.9 percent)
Rick Santorum (3.1 percent)
Jon Huntsman (1.2 percent)

Seems like Cain has actually increased his lead from earlier in the week.

Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 6:51 PM

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:34 PM

I think I’ve seen a picture of that on the internet.

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:55 PM

and the minutes tick away on the Cain boomlet…….

15……14…..13…..

PappyD61 on October 21, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Let it be known, concerning the Stossel clip, Jason Coleman said:

I don’t see any statements there that are inconsistent

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Your guy is cooked, OK? It’s over, Mr. Coleman. That clip is going down in political history and will be the subject of many, many political communications courses to come.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Second look at….

OMG

Nessuno on October 21, 2011 at 5:52 PM

Sadly, that “…” speaks volumes.

DrAllecon on October 21, 2011 at 6:57 PM

Seems like Cain has actually increased his lead from earlier in the week.

Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 6:51 PM

Which polling company? Would you happen to have a link?

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:58 PM

It’s a sad, sad situation when Gingrich starts looking like the least objectionable candidate.

Cain isn’t stupid, but when he talks like this he sure does a good impression of stupid. I assume he’s just doing a really bad job at triangulation. He should leave that to the expert (Romney).

Splashman on October 21, 2011 at 6:59 PM

I had the same expression on my own face watching the Stossel clip.

Aslans Girl on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

Me too. I watched it three times before I got my jaw off the floor. I still don’t know what on earth he wants.

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:59 PM

Good night, Gracie.

Mason on October 21, 2011 at 6:59 PM

His years as a paid spokesman and actor of course had nothing to do with his being a great communicator, right?

How do you get more morally clear than:

“I am pro-life from conception, no exceptions”
“I will sign any legislation to defund Planned Parenthood.”
“My position is – No Abortion”

If you’re looking for moral clarity, Cain’s about the top dog in the race.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011

Cain has had a radio program for years now. Surely he’s had the opportunity to polish his rhetoric and issue positions.

I, for one, am not looking for perfection in a candidate. But I do seek clarity over ambiguity, especially on critical issues.

JonPrichard on October 21, 2011 at 7:00 PM

Which polling company? Would you happen to have a link?

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:58 PM

University of Iowa

Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 7:01 PM

No GOP POTUS candidate who is “generally” electable will admit to overturning Roe v. Wade, nor will they legislatively. Social issue voters need to accept this and move on. It is foolish to die on the “Roe” hill…unless, of course, the social voters want to guarantee obake another 4 years to totally ruin the country. If he is re-elected, THAT will happen.

ladyingray on October 21, 2011 at 6:49 PM

I’m sorry it didn’t work out for you, Mitch. Maybe you can get Mrs. Daniels to let you run again some other time?

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Well, no, clearly you are making an accusation.

Allahpundit on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

The only accusation here is yours, and it’s not the first time. What is with your hissy fits lately?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:02 PM

After watching Krauthammer excloriate Cain just now, it’s obvious that the establishment media’s strategy to take him out is through the abortion issue.

RedRedRice on October 21, 2011 at 7:02 PM

After watching Krauthammer excloriate Cain just now, it’s obvious that the establishment media’s strategy to take him out is through the abortion issue.

RedRedRice on October 21, 2011

Actually, I thought it was going to be through one of the nines, not sure which one though.

JonPrichard on October 21, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Which do you see as inconsistent Punchy?

Is it this one?

Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice.

If it is, it’s only damaging when it’s taken out of context.

Yet in context.

Stossel: So I’m confused on what your position is.
Cain: My position is I’m pro-life. Period.
Stossel: If a woman is raped, she should not be allowed to end the pregnancy?
Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice. I support life from conception.
Stossel: So abortion should be legal?
Cain: No, abortion should not be legal. I believe in the sanctity of life.
Stossel: I’m not getting it. I’m not understanding it. If it’s her choice, that means it’s legal.
Cain: No. I don’t believe a woman should have an abortion. Does that help to clear it up?
Stossel: Even if she is raped?
Cain: Even if she is raped or the victim of incest

It is her choice, only she can make it. If abortion is legal, she can make that choice without legal consequence.

If it is illegal, it would still be her choice to seek out an abortion or not and suffer the legal consequences.

—————————–

The government cannot stop someone from deciding to break the law. The government can hinder someone’s ability to break the law, the government can prosecute someone from breaking the law, but the government cannot stop someone from deciding to break the law.

——————–

Now if your comment is that Cain is TOO pro-life in that he doesn’t accept exceptions for rape and incest, then that’s a different case altogether and it doesn’t support your contention that Cain would be “more than likely” to appoint judges that would NOT be inclined to overter RvW.

————–

Stossel’s comment is the one that amazes me.

Stossel: I’m not getting it. I’m not understanding it. If it’s her choice, that means it’s legal.

Just because someone chooses to murder their boss doesn’t make it legal.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:05 PM

After watching Krauthammer excloriate Cain just now, it’s obvious that the establishment media’s strategy to take him out is through the abortion issue.

RedRedRice on October 21, 2011 at 7:02 PM

Cain took Cain down. You can’t blame the panel on Special Report, of all places, for commenting on what is a political train wreck. You can’t blame AP, either.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:05 PM

I like the fact that Cain isn’t scripted. I don’t like the fact that it takes him two days to get an answer straight on abortion.

Allahpundit on October 21, 2011 at 6:04 PM

It gives me unease as well, but I wouldn’t have expected to be asked about a back-burner issue like this. It’s on the level with gay marriage. When you haven’t spent your life preparing answers to every possible political question, you concentrate on the issues at hand. If anything, I would definitely say he is unprepared for the machinations of the media, but if that’s the actual benchmark of a leader, then the election’s already lost.

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:05 PM

I, for one, am not looking for perfection in a candidate. But I do seek clarity over ambiguity, especially on critical issues.

JonPrichard on October 21, 2011 at 7:00 PM

I’m curious, what “ambiguous” statement on abortion are you referring to?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:06 PM

Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice.

Your guy is Democrat, Mr. Coleman. I’m sorry — I’m so, so sorry. :’(

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:07 PM

Which polling company? Would you happen to have a link?
capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 6:58 PM

University of Iowa
Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 7:01 PM

That doesn’t surprise me – Cain’s support at the same or higher levels. Not everybody follows AP’s posts on HA and I suspect people are getting tired of the hitjobs anyway; the crowd at the last debate got “pretty ugly” when Perry and Romney took lowdown shots at one another.

whatcat on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

He would probably isn’t good enough and his comments as of late make it more than likely he would not appoint such judges.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:14 PM

So his difficulty clarifying his position on abortion, which seems convoluted at best, is evidence that he wouldn’t pick good judges?

Good lord. Can someone please make a list of what tests candidates are supposed to pass in order to gain support? I have a feeling it’ll put the tax code to shame.

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

but if that’s the actual benchmark of a leader, then the election’s already lost.

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:05 PM

Since that seems to be what people are using as the benchmark this time, I wager the election is already lost. Everybody wants to know who is going to be able to stand up to the pro-Obama media. The answer to that is “nobody.”

CrankyTRex on October 21, 2011 at 7:10 PM

Good lord. Can someone please make a list of what tests candidates are supposed to pass in order to gain support? I have a feeling it’ll put the tax code to shame.

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Excellent post..:)

Dire Straits on October 21, 2011 at 7:10 PM

This is really about abortion anymore. It’s about the flip-flops and the absolute incoherency of Cain’s position. What else is he going to flip-flop on? That’s what this is all about.

Aslans Girl on October 21, 2011 at 6:48 PM

You’re right, this isn’t about abortion, but I don’t think it’s a flip-flop, because he hasn’t yet made his position clear. Seems like he’s deliberately obfuscating, to avoid making his position clear on a controversial subject. And that is no less despicable than a flip-flop.

I was really excited about Cain back in Feb/March. Then he started talking foreign policy, and it quickly became clear he simply wasn’t ready for the job. This ridiculous blather on abortion is only the latest evidence.

Haagen Dazs Black Walnut is indeed the flavor of the month. Prepare yourself for Joseph Smith Vanilla.

God help us all.

Splashman on October 21, 2011 at 7:11 PM

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 6:43 PM

From the Stossel clip you can only draw 2 conclusions.
1 He has multiple personalities.
2 He is stating that he is personally pro-life, but that govt should not have any say in it which means he may as well be pro-abortion.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 7:13 PM

So his difficulty clarifying his position on abortion, which seems convoluted at best, is evidence that he wouldn’t pick good judges? MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

I love your fighting spirit! You’re like Coleman only less shameless.

Good lord. Can someone please make a list of what tests candidates are supposed to pass in order to gain support? I have a feeling it’ll put the tax code to shame.

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Knowing what he actually personally believes would be good, for starters.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:14 PM

Seems like Cain has actually increased his lead from earlier in the week.
Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 6:51 PM

Wow! I guess people out there aren’t thinking like some of us here. I keep hearing how he’s going to implode. What happened??

gracie on October 21, 2011 at 7:16 PM

Cain: That’s her choice. That is not government’s choice.

Your guy is Democrat, Mr. Coleman. I’m sorry — I’m so, so sorry. :’(

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:07 PM

Explain how the government prevents the thief from choosing to steal from his victim Mr. Punchenko.

Government cannot make decisions for people. Nor should it.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:17 PM

So his difficulty clarifying his position on abortion, which seems convoluted at best, is evidence that he wouldn’t pick good judges?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Well you could throw in the GITMO thing, and the ‘right of return’ thing, and the against school vouchers for private schools/I support vouchers thing, and the electrical fence joke/not-joke thing, and the Fed audit thing, and the “I support affermative action, but I do not support one-size-fits-all applications,” thing, and the ‘I would force the hard discipline’ on the debt/reversed five days later thing, and the stop Iran’s nukes thing with drilling thing, and then the ‘elect me to find out about my foreign policy’ thing.

Other than that he’s been clear as a bell.

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

2 He is stating that he is personally pro-life, but that govt should not have any say in it which means he may as well be pro-abortion.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 7:13 PM

I’ll ask you the same question.

Explain how the government prevents the thief from choosing to steal from his victim?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

If only Cain’s position on abortion was as consistent as Romney’s, there would be no confusion.

RedRedRice on October 21, 2011 at 7:20 PM

Re: University of Iowa – okay, thank you. I wonder how accurate that is.

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 7:22 PM

Explain how the government prevents the thief from choosing to steal from his victim?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

Apples and oranges! LOL!

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:23 PM

How scary is Cain’s foreign policy slogan at this point:

Peace Through Strength And Clarity

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 7:24 PM

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

Cain is for school vouchers and charter schools. Cain is for local funding and control of schools.

Cain is against the Federal Department of Education.
Cain is against FEDERAL School Vouchers.

The only thing you have to support your statement on Cain and school vouchers is the National Review article which extrapolates Cain’s position against Federal Education Control to cover all Education.

That’s invalid, and not supported by the evidence.

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:24 PM

Big question: would conservatives be more satisfied if he just answered every question by repeating “9-9-9″ several times and smiling?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 5:54 PM

I would be satisfied if Cain didn’t have to keep correcting every other statement he makes.

Is that too much to ask?

portlandon on October 21, 2011 at 6:09 PM

Yeah. Kind of hard to get your message out when every new message is “clarifying” a previous message.

As the old saying goes, “This election is beginning to worry me. What if one of the candidates wins?”

There Goes The Neighborhood on October 21, 2011 at 7:25 PM

If only Cain’s position on abortion was as consistent as Romney’s, there would be no confusion.

RedRedRice on October 21, 2011 at 7:20 PM

Exactly–they should be running mates. I have no idea what either one would really do if elected.

jazz_piano on October 21, 2011 at 7:25 PM

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:23 PM

Very well. . .

Explain how the government prevents the murderer from choosing to murder his victim?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:25 PM

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

You seem to miss the point. If he is saying the govt should not regulate or control the process then he may as well be saying that he wont lift a finger to protect life or to keep the baby killers from making further inroads.Your pretzel logic is Palinista born and bred.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 7:26 PM

Incoherence. Picture this in a debate with obama.

paul1149 on October 21, 2011 at 7:26 PM

I’m curious, what “ambiguous” statement on abortion are you referring to?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011

The totality of inconsistencies in just his most recent statements on the subject creates significant ambiguity. But if its necessary to point to any specific ambiguity it is in the area of the government’s role in abortion. I can’t tell from his statements if he is unclear of the government’s role (or President’s) or if he truly doesn’t believe the government should invade the privacy between a doctor and his patient where it regards abortion.

JonPrichard on October 21, 2011 at 7:26 PM

So his difficulty clarifying his position on abortion, which seems convoluted at best, is evidence that he wouldn’t pick good judges?

MadisonConservative on October 21, 2011 at 7:08 PM

Well you could throw in the GITMO thing, and the ‘right of return’ thing, and the against school vouchers for private schools/I support vouchers thing, and the electrical fence joke/not-joke thing, and the Fed audit thing, and the “I support affermative action, but I do not support one-size-fits-all applications,” thing, and the ‘I would force the hard discipline’ on the debt/reversed five days later thing, and the stop Iran’s nukes thing with drilling thing, and then the ‘elect me to find out about my foreign policy’ thing.
Other than that he’s been clear as a bell.
sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 7:19 PM

In all fairness people can make (and do make) such laundry lists of disqualifying items, both perceived and tangible, on all of the candidates.

whatcat on October 21, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Capitalist piglet and punchenko are seriously screwed in the head. They make it a point to troll EVERY Cain thread. Makes me think race IS an issue with those two. I dislike Romney, but I’m not on every Romney thread bashing him for simply breathing like those two do to Cain.

Hard Right on October 21, 2011 at 7:27 PM

How scary is Cain’s foreign policy slogan at this point:

Peace Through Strength And Clarity

capitalist piglet on October 21, 2011 at 7:24 PM

I actually thought you made that up.
We are in so much trouble.
Oh Crap

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 7:27 PM

Yeah. Kind of hard to get your message out when every new message is “clarifying” a previous message.

There Goes The Neighborhood on October 21, 2011 at 7:25 PM

Do you have a example to point to where Cain rushed out to clarify his position?

Or do you have bunch of media and bloggers asking the same questions from different angles and presenting hypotheticals?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011 at 7:28 PM

Capitalist piglet and punchenko are seriously screwed in the head. They make it a point to troll EVERY Cain thread. Makes me think race IS an issue with those two. I dislike Romney, but I’m not on every Romney thread bashing him for simply breathing like those two do to Cain.

Hard Right on October 21, 2011 at 7:27 PM

*THUMP* goes the race card!

I guess you’re going to go the Obama route and start accusing Cain’s critics as racist. Real smart, Squish Right — real smart. At least we know you’re a Democrat now.

Punchenko on October 21, 2011 at 7:30 PM

In all fairness people can make (and do make) such laundry lists of disqualifying items, both perceived and tangible, on all of the candidates.

whatcat on October 21, 2011 at 7:27 PM

In all fairness he has been incoherent or had to clarify just about everything he ever said.

The list would be a lot shorter if we made it of issues he hasn’t had to do damage control on.

In fact… what would be on that list?

sharrukin on October 21, 2011 at 7:31 PM

New poll just out in Iowa taken yesterday:

Herman Cain (37 percent)
Mitt Romney (27 percent)
Ron Paul (11.5 percent)
Newt Gingrich (7.7 percent)
Rick Perry (5.9 percent)
Michele Bachmann (3.9 percent)
Rick Santorum (3.1 percent)
Jon Huntsman (1.2 percent)

Seems like Cain has actually increased his lead from earlier in the week.

Norwegian on October 21, 2011 at 6:51 PM

Here’s the link to this poll.

Knucklehead on October 21, 2011 at 7:31 PM

2 He is stating that he is personally pro-life, but that govt should not have any say in it which means he may as well be pro-abortion.

Southernblogger on October 21, 2011 at 7:13 PM

I’ll ask you the same question.

Explain how the government prevents the thief from choosing to steal from his victim?

Jason Coleman on October 21, 2011

The government doesn’t prevent the thief’s choice. If the thief is caught, the government locks him up. If he’s caught making that choice a lot, he goes away for a long stretch.

Cain says he’s 100% pro-life. We don’t know whether he is or not. We have to divine from his actions, deeds and words. If we use your analogy, Cain is saying the thief will make his choice, but we wont lock him up. There are no consequences.

JonPrichard on October 21, 2011 at 7:33 PM

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