Here’s the follow-up to Curt Anderson’s appearance on Fox this morning, in which Anderson not only denied having leaked the harassment story to Politico but publicly gave them permission to out him if he is the leaker. If you don’t want to watch Block’s reply, Christian Heinze has a transcript. After reading it, though, I’m still confused. Block says he “stands behind” what they said yesterday, but when Kelly presses him on that, he replies, “until we get all the facts, I’m just going to say that we accept what Mr. Anderson has said and we want to move on with the campaign.” Which means … what? They still think Perry’s camp leaked the story but they no longer believe Anderson was the middleman? Or they no longer believe Perry’s camp leaked the story? More to the point, why did a guy who’s spent the week inveighing against poorly sourced, speculative accusations think it was a good idea to start tossing poorly sourced, speculative accusations against Curt Anderson? And do note, it’s not just Block doing this in some rogue attempt at damage control. It was Cain himself who first pointed the finger at Anderson yesterday in an interview with Richard Miniter.
Block might want to move on but that won’t happen until next week at the earliest. According to the Journal, the lawyer for one of Cain’s accusers is giving the NRA until tomorrow to waive the confidentiality provisions in her settlement agreement so that she can make a statement. (The NRA’s lawyers are looking at the statement this afternoon.) If they don’t waive the provisions, I don’t know what happens — either the lawyer will hold a presser claiming that she’s being gagged to cover for Cain, which will turn up the heat further, or he’ll go ahead and issue the statement anyway and dare the NRA to sue. Meanwhile, Politico’s reporting this afternoon that one of the accusers received $45,000 in her settlement. Not big money, but bigger than Cain’s estimate of two or three months’ worth of salary.
Update: A new anonymous source comes forward — and this time, he’s on Cain’s side.
A Republican source who was at the dinner in which pollster Chris Wilson says Herman Cain sexually harassed a young staffer is contradicting the account, telling CBS News he never saw Cain sexually harass anyone that night, although he does remember Cain drinking.
“I did not see a lech,” the source said…
But the source said he “didn’t remember (Cain) doing anything” at the dinner, which he said was at a Ruth Chris’ steakhouse in Crystal City, Virginia. The source said Cain “may have been a little drunk,” but he didn’t see anything inappropriate–and added that he never heard anyone discuss anything inappropriate that may have occurred. He said about a half dozen people were there.
Ironically, Wilson was one of the very few people involved in this clusterfark to have put his credibility on the line by making the accusation as a named source.