Forget sexual harassment claims, Herman Cain is too much like Obama
I used to ride the Cain train. Now, I’ve stepped off. Though Herman Cain has marketed himself as the anti-Obama, the similarities are disturbing. They both lack needed political experience and peddle slogans over substance.
Colorado Springs, Colo.
I used to ride the Cain train. Now, I’ve stepped off. The reason I’m rethinking my support for GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain has little to do with the increased media scrutiny, namely the sexual harassment allegations leveled against him.Skip to next paragraph
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No, the real reason I am rethinking my support for Mr. Cain is very simple: He is too much like President Obama. This is ironic because Cain has very successfully marketed himself as the anti-Obama – the conservative outsider who is ignorant of Washington political shenanigans, the honest straight-talker with common sense solutions and a no-bull approach. Like many others, I initially found this style quite attractive, and I supported Cain for the GOP nomination long before his recent surge in the polls.
But after Cain’s initial charm wore off, I began to look a little deeper, and I found the similarities between Cain and Mr. Obama were disturbing to say the least.
For starters, Obama and Cain both share a lack of political experience. When it was obvious that Obama was a real contender for the White House, I remember conservative pundits making quite a noise over Obama’s relative lack of political experience, calling him an “empty suit” and arguing that such a political novice couldn’t possibly make a good president. I agreed with them then, and I agree with them now. The leader of the free world should know what he is doing, and as Obama’s bumbling presidency has deftly demonstrated, political experience matters.
I don’t believe in double standards, and Cain shouldn’t be exempt from the experience criterion simply because he holds conservative positions. Being the president of the United States is unquestionably the most difficult job in the world, and politics is a dangerous game. If our next president does not have the knowledge to carefully navigate the shark-infested waters of international and domestic policymaking, he will get eaten for lunch. There are literally hundreds of powder-keg issues facing this nation and the global community that will most certainly blow into full-fledged crises if not handled with extreme delicacy and wisdom – wisdom born of time and experience. This is no time for a novice.
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Second, a good politician needs to know how to unify the nation and even, dare I say it, compromise with the opposition. Politics is at its heart the art of compromise. Nothing more, nothing less. The trick is knowing when to compromise and on what. Obama has shown little ability in this area. His radical legislative proposals – including massive stimulus spending and constitutionally doubtful health-care legislation – have helped charge Washington with an air of hostility and rancor on a scale rarely seen. This is not good politics. And it’s not good compromise.