Herman Cain just finished the press conference on the accusations made by Sharon Bialek on Monday with the assistance of activist lawyer Gloria AllRed.
C-SPAN opened up at about 2 pm and gave a very brief background on the events leading up to the presser. They also quoted an article from AP that sounded like AP had already made up its mind about what would come out of the presser.
Glen Wood (sp?), a lawyer who works on sexual harassment cases, from both sides appears and puts down the manner in which Gloria AllRed has gone about making Sharon Bialek’s alleged story known. He called it the Court of Opinon versus the Court of Law. He also said the accusations were false, that Herman Cain was coming forward to defend his reputation. From the media, he asked for fairness, to maintain common sense. Before leaving the podium, he stated that he thought there were others who had an agenda in the allegations being leveled against Mr. Cain.
2:09 pm PST
Cain takes over the podium. Says he chose to respond directly instead of releasing statements from his campaign. “I have nevere acted inappropriately with anyone, ever.”
When he first saw Sharon Bialek on TV yesterday, he says he didn’t recognize her or her name. He rejected the charges: “They simply did not happen.”
About leaving the race, he simply states, “Ain’t gonna happen.”
Returning to the main topic, Cain calls Bialek a troubled woman “brought forth by the Democratic Machine.”
He knows that “Sexual harassment allegations are serious.”
He talked to his wife of 44 years about the allegations by Bialek and others: she doesn’t believe it.
He asked the media to be professional and to leave his family out of it: he is the one running, not his family. Promised to “vigorously defend my reputation.”
2:19 pm PST
Cain then opened up to questions.
CBS asked the most telling one. Would Cain be willing to take a lie detector test, and Cain replied with an unequivical, “Yes.”
Reuters mentioned polling that showed 40% of Republicans not supporting or not wanting to support Cain because of the allegations. Cain replys that he doesn’t need 100% of the voters, only 51%. His supporters believe that he did not do this.
The L.A. Times asked if he thought sexual harassment was real, if had seen it. Cain replied that he had seen what might be considered harassment and had dealt with it accordingly. That he had seen it from both genders.
ABC asked about the accuser who works at the Treasury Dept. Cain recalled the person and said her claim was found to be baseless as no one could corroborate it. It was treated as a personnel matter, saying it was not a settlement as that implies a legal matter. He corrected the accusations of changing his story.
Wall Street Journal asked where Cain thought these attacks were coming from. Cain believes that it’s people who do’t want Cain as a GOP nominee or president. That there is some machine that wants to keep a businessman out of the White House.
Fox10, a local affiliate, on Romney’s “disturbing” comment. Cain agreed that such allegations are disturbing, but thinks that Romney was not talking about him personally.
FoxNews asked if it Cain thought the allegations were part of a conspiracy. Cain said that they had no proof, just coincidences that someone is behind it.
NBC wondered if Cain thought that Bialek’s financial problems played a part in the accusations. Cain thought it might be a possible motive.
CNN asked why the ealier accusations were baseless. Cain referred once again to the only one he recalled. She was the only who hired a lawyer and it ended in her leaving the NRA with a personnel agreement, not a legal settlement. Cain then talked about his duties as the head of the NRA.
National Journal wanted to know if Cain would recall Sharon Bialek later. Cain replied it was always possible, but not likely as he has a good memory for those who made an impact on him.
NY Times wanted more info on the case Cain recalled from the NRA. This turned out to be the gesture of height and Cain saying to the woman that she was the same height as his wife.
2:35 pm PST
Herman Cain closed the press conference. Says we have to get back to the real problems needing real solutions.
Video link to presser.
My thoughts are that Cain handled the matter extremely well. He handled the question very well, only going off topic to talk about the difference between personnel agreements and legal settlements. I think he has managed to take back the message – though I am sure he will be dealing with this through at least New Hampshire’s primary.