Uh oh: Witness found to Cain incidents?

posted at 1:25 pm on November 2, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

So far, neither of the two alleged complainants from Herman Cain’s tenure at the National Restaurant Association have come forward publicly, although it appears at least one would like NRA to release her from her confidentiality agreement to do so.  However, a pollster who worked for NRA at the time told KTOK in Oklahoma that he witnessed both incidents — and that if the women talk, Cain’s candidacy would be over:

Interviewed today on KTOK’s Mullins in the Morning, [Chris] Wilson, of Wilson-Perkins-Allen Opinion Research headquartered in Washington, D.C. explained he was a witness to the incident.  “I was the pollster at the National Restaurant Association when Herman Cain was head of it and I was around a couple of times when this happened and anyone who was involved with the NRA at the time, knew that this was gonna come up.”

Wilson described the woman as a low level staffer who was maybe two years out of college.  “This occurred at a restaurant in Crystal City (Virginia) and everybody was aware of it,” he continued.  “It was only a matter of time because so many people were aware of what took place, so many people were aware of her situation, the fact she left—everybody knew with the campaign that this would eventually come up.”

Wilson claims that he also can’t discuss the specifics, for legal reasons.  I’m not quite clear as to what that might be.  He may have signed a broad non-disclosure agreement with NRA to get the polling work, but if that’s the case, he just violated it with this statement today.  Unless he also participated in the settlement/severance agreements with the women, he’s as free to discuss the details as the fact that he witnessed them.  And it’s difficult to see how Wilson would have been involved in a settlement between NRA and the two employees.

However, Wilson isn’t only linked to NRA and Cain from years gone by.  His firm has conducted polling in this presidential race for the Make Us Great Again PAC.  And guess which candidate is favored by MUGA-PAC?  Why, none other than … Rick Perry.  The PAC has no formal connection to Perry’s campaign, but it’s certainly boosting Perry as the Republican nominee in the primary.

Could Wilson be more than just a witness in this story?  Could he be a source?  It could just be a coincidence that a witness to these alleged incidents did work for an organization pushing Perry, and that the story mysteriously got to Politico as Cain took support away from Perry in mid-October.  If he is the source, then conducting an interview on the topic has to be one of the dumber political moves I’ve seen.

Update: Some are saying that this indicates Romney as the source of the leak, but I’m not terribly convinced that a one-time donation means much.  Romney has less to fear with Cain as his main opponent than others in the race, and besides, no one knows whether Anderson ever knew about the incidents at all.  Other board members say they didn’t.  YMMV, however.

Update II: There have been plenty of developments that we have covered in other posts, but this development should be noted here:

Wilson emails THE WEEKLY STANDRD: “To be clear, and you can ask any of the reporters covering this story, I had nothing to do with leaking this in any way, and I’ve never discussed or shared this story with any of my clients – period.”

I’m pretty sure Politico won’t confirm or deny on any speculation on sources, but Wilson’s denial should be noted on this post.  However, John McCormack notes that Wilson has another indirect connection to the Perry campaign:

But pollster Tony Fabrizio, who was Wilson’s boss at Fabrizio, McLaughlin & Associates at the time of the alleged incidents, was hired by the Perry campaign in October.

Although Wilson claims that “anyone who was involved with the NRA at the time knew that this [incident with Cain] was gonna come up,” Fabrizio says he didn’t now that Cain was accused of sexual harassment.

“Our firm worked for the NRA prior to Herman Cain’s ascendancy there, during his presidency, and even for a little bit after that,” Fabrizio tells THE WEEKLY STANDARD. “But I was never witness to any of what Chris is saying, or at least what I’ve read as the account of what he’s saying.”

But did Wilson ever tell his boss about any of these incidents or allegations? “No, not that I recall, no,” says Fabrizio.

We’ll see.

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northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Really??? How often do I bring up he-who-shall-not-be-named-at-HotAir in these discussions.

I am told he has not a chance at this nomination, so why bring him up outside threads about him?

I’m just noting that Herman Cain is acting awfully lot like he has something to hide, amidst stories involving sexual harrassment, heavy alcohol consumption, and payment of hush money.

But then again… what’s there to be suspicious of?…

JohnGalt23 on November 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

You think it might be because a) Romney isn’t conservative and b) Romney poses no threat to the left, but Herman Cain is a MASSIVE, EXISTENTIAL threat to them?

BKennedy on November 2, 2011 at 5:04 PM

Romney’s been vetted … and he’s been found to be a flip-flopper – but no allegations of SH. They would have come forward long ago.

Cain is a noob – new to the scene. It’s a part of the process.

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Next – no … we haven’t heard from the women. Yes – Politico has reported some things – and you guys say that the politico story is false – so why wouldn’t their reports of what the women said be false also?

I’d like to hear from the women themselves thank you.

I have a feeling I will hear from the women – we all will.

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:04 PM

But you made the accusation that Cain was guilty of sexual harassment – even though you now acknowledge that you haven’t even talked to the people involved.

Furthermore, you’ve demonstrated you’re a hypocrite by whining and complaining that someone else needs to prove accusations made against you — while insisting that accusations against Cain equal guilt.

northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Oh, so you don’t know that they’re true? Then why are you and your buddy JohnGalt23 screaming that Cain is guilty?

northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Oh, and I suspect Honda would appreciate it if you disabuse yourself of the notion that he and I are “buddies”.

We go at it plenty.

JohnGalt23 on November 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

But then again… what’s there to be suspicious of?…

JohnGalt23 on November 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Welcome to the Racist Club Johnny! I got a white robe for you, don’t spill any wine on mine though – I just pressed it!

For even QUESTIONING Cain – we’re “lynchers”

Yeeeeeehaaa!

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Oh, and I suspect Honda would appreciate it if you disabuse yourself of the notion that he and I are “buddies”.

We go at it plenty.

JohnGalt23 on November 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Damn right I hate you guy!

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

“I’m not saying Cain is guilty. I’m just demanding he prove his innocence against the charges, of which I know none of the details.”

Jim Treacher on November 2, 2011 at 5:09 PM

The allegations against me were investigated and dismissed as false. There’s a military record of it. I’m fine with you viewing it.

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 4:48 PM

Not good enough. The military even covered up Mia Lai with Colin Powell’s help. They could easily have covered up for you. I want to hear from your accuser.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Furthermore, you’ve demonstrated you’re a hypocrite by whining and complaining that someone else needs to prove accusations made against you — while insisting that accusations against Cain equal guilt.

northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

I’ve stated from the beginning that the allegations against Cain should be proven. However, these women can’t prove anything as long as they’re “muzzled” and can’t talk.

Cain needs to ask the NRA to allow them to talk. The complaint is a decade old – and Cain is running for POTUS … we need to know the facts here.

Why won’t Cain let them come out? Why are you afraid to allow these women to talk?

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Not good enough. The military even covered up Mia Lai with Colin Powell’s help. They could easily have covered up for you. I want to hear from your accuser.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Give me an emal addy and I’ll give you his name – it’s been twenty years – you go find him.

I have nothing to hide. That’s more than Herman Cain will give you.

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:12 PM

Not good enough. The military even covered up Mia Lai with Colin Powell’s help. They could easily have covered up for you. I want to hear from your accuser.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Just noticed this – but are you trying to “LYNCH” Colin Powell? :P

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

I’ve stated from the beginning that the allegations against Cain should be proven. However, these women can’t prove anything as long as they’re “muzzled” and can’t talk.

Red herring. They had no trouble talking to Politico. They had no trouble talking to all their family and friends who are now blabbing against and making accusations against Cain.

The problem here is that people are questioning who these women are — but legally, since they’ve already violated their NDA, they can be sued out of existence and have any and everything they collected clawed back, including legal fees due to their breaking the agreement.

Cain needs to ask the NRA to allow them to talk. The complaint is a decade old – and Cain is running for POTUS … we need to know the facts here.

Why start now? You screamed for Cain’s head and declared him guilty based on anonymous tips from these women. Why don’t we talk about what your motivations are here for believing their accusations?

Why won’t Cain let them come out? Why are you afraid to allow these women to talk?

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:11 PM

LOL….such drama from the coward.

The problem is, HondaV65, this is America. You can’t compel people to provide evidence against themselves. You made the accusation, and thus the burden of proof falls on YOU.

If this were a court case, it would have been summarily disposed of by now. The only thing keeping it going is the stupid bigotry and desperation of Cain lynchers like yourself who let your need to destroy the uppity black man who made your Perry look like a fool put you in the situation where you’re now completely without evidence.

northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Give me an emal addy and I’ll give you his name – it’s been twenty years – you go find him.

I have nothing to hide. That’s more than Herman Cain will give you.

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:12 PM

You seem to have an awful lot to hide. We have probably just scratched the surface of your nefarious past. If there was one person who said you were guilty, I’ll bet there were plenty more. All-in-all, you come across as a very guilty person with a very guilty conscience – if you even have a conscience. What other crimes have you committed? Were you the one who ordered “Fast and Furious” and then tried to blame Eric Holder?

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:22 PM

I still want to know more about Herman Cain, but I want to make up my own mind, and I sure don’t want the high-tech lynch mob to do it for me.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 4:52 PM

Me too. To repeat myself, I don’t know who I’ll end up supporting on primary day, but I’m sure as hell going to support Herman (as long as I think I reasonably can) on this one. I was pretty optimistic about Bachmann and Perry, at one time. Here’s hoping there’s not another disappointment in store.

Actually, if Herman is very certain it will come out to his advantage, it might be a good strategy for him to ask NRA to let the woman talk. But I do NOT want to see him or NRA bullied into releasing them from the NDA’s. No way.

petefrt on November 2, 2011 at 5:23 PM

By the way, HondaV65, you and your fellow Cain haters have no one to blame for this fiasco but yourselves.

Rest assured that, if Perry falls victim to the same type of smear mongering that Politico is doing here, I’ll be just as vehement against those who seek to lynch him without facts or evidence like you’re trying to do with Cain.

The reason is that Obama is the enemy here. Barack Obama is the one responsible for this, and Barack Obama is the one who has to be removed from office in order for Politico, the Obama Party, and the rest of the bloodsucking leeches who are draining this country dry to be destroyed.

You should take a lesson from that and realize that they are the enemy, not Cain’s supporters.

northdallasthirty on November 2, 2011 at 5:24 PM

Just noticed this – but are you trying to “LYNCH” Colin Powell? :P

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Although you don’t seem to at all be one for gathering evidence, google Colin Powell Mia Lia cover up.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:27 PM

Although you don’t seem to at all be one for gathering evidence, google Colin Powell Mia Lia cover up.

InkyBinkyBarleyBoo on November 2, 2011 at 5:27 PM

You are in trouble now. You’re messing with one of the Perfumed Princes of the Pentagon (PPP). Vary your routes.

platypus on November 2, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Cain needs to ask the NRA to allow them to talk. The complaint is a
decade old – and Cain is running for POTUS … we need to know the
facts here.
Why won’t Cain let them come out? Why are you afraid to allow
these women to talk?
HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:11 PM
So… “the complaint” automatically equals “the facts”?

Don’t you see how ridiculous that is? Why would you consent to the release of information that, from Cain’s perspective, are falsehoods? What does Cain have to gain?

spinach.chin on November 2, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Cain has no one to point fingers at except himself.

Conservative Samizdat on November 2, 2011 at 11:50 PM

How can any man say he’s never sexually harassed anybody? The standard is so vague and subjective it could be anything from telling someone she looks nice to groping her. Of course, the former case would get nowhere in court, but it would cost the company tens of thousands on up to defend it successfully, and much more if it includes an appeal. Judges are really wusses about dismissing cases on a motion for summary judgment, lest they be accused of denying someone her day in court. So defendants settle and the sleazy lawyers get a third or a half and the costs are born by the rest of us.

I probably harassed a girl I had a crush on as a teenager. I was really a moon calf, but I meant no harm. And sexual harassment Panda hadn’t been to our schools yet.

flataffect on November 3, 2011 at 12:32 AM

” . . . Your pathetic.”
I wish i owned one. A “pathetic.”

BigAlSouth on November 3, 2011 at 8:30 AM

HondaV65 on November 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM
“I’m not saying Cain is guilty. I’m just demanding he prove his innocence against the charges, of which I know none of the details.”

Jim Treacher on November 2, 2011 at 5:09 PM

PERFECT answer there Jim.
They all sound like judge dread ” I AM DA LAW” I cant be wrong!

ColdWarrior57 on November 5, 2011 at 2:13 AM

He’s bungled it according to any objective standard.

This is the logical fallacy called “argument by consensus”; it’s the same one the AGW movement uses.

Do you care that your statement isn’t a rational one?

I’m less interested in the alleged verbal sexual impropriety (which I assume falls within the shadow realm of “inappropriate” and its various emotional interpretations) than in the fundamental executive competency and political adroitness of crisis management. Cain has shown very little of either, or even much ability to learn from error. Does he have decent advisors, or how does he relate to them and they to him?

Failure to gather and familiarize himself with facts before talking.
Offering vague and scumbled statements
No proactive problem-solving crisis management — all defensive.
Speculating about racial motives of democrats rather than citing history of double-standard

Poor executive and political performance all around.

I agree with Larry Elder and others who also point out the political failure in his mishandling of the race issue, when in he’s had golden opportunities at Fox News and in other interviews to expose the double-standards and racial exploitations of democrats and leftists.

I hope he not only survives but prospers and kicks in the teeth of Politico and his accusers, if they are indeed acting in bad faith. But what are the indications?

rrpjr on November 2, 2011 at 4:08 PM

His career resume is enough of an indicator.

Should I behave like you and state that as an objective truth? :)

Bizarro No. 1 on November 5, 2011 at 6:38 PM

In a stronger field of candidates, this would have been true. With the current field of candidates, he may yet be the nominee.

didymus on November 2, 2011 at 3:48 PM

I disagree.

Bizarro No. 1 on November 5, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Have you noticed how it seems some Perry supporters have issues with projection?

whatcat on November 2, 2011 at 2:53 PM

No, because it’s not possible that Perry supporters have any personality flaws!!! :)

Bizarro No. 1 on November 5, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Actually, it’s rather funny, you fall into it with the “electric fence” bit, and the “gitmo”, those were exactly what the liberal rags were stating and you bought into it…but of course you would never see you as being manipulated….just that every talking point you stated were exactly what was on Huffpo, Media Matters, Mother Jones, DailyKos…just a coincidence I suppose.
And of course Rubio, Perry, Romney, etc, they will all have people creating a list just like you did…you will still support your man, but the others will pull out their list, like you did, and never realize what is happening.
And I will accuse them of the same and they will say “How ironic”…of course you don’t see it, that’s the point….duhhhhh!

right2bright on November 2, 2011 at 3:18 PM

You want to know how funny this is? If you would have read the last sentence of my post, you would have seen that I had said, “After he ended up not being done then, the next time he was done was when he…keep swinging, you chicken-little hystericals, you PerryKrishnas, and other wishful thinkers – you’ll make contact with the ball one of these times. Right? Hopefully? ROFL! :)

I am a Cain defender here at HA; I guess you’ve never noticed.

Bizarro No. 1 on November 5, 2011 at 6:57 PM

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