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Herman Cain: Woman's statement about sexual harassment may be released today

A new poll shows Herman Cain with continuing strong support among Republicans. But a woman who claims she was sexually harassed is trying to release a written statement about Herman Cain's alleged actions.

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"This is the D.C. culture: Guilty until proven innocent," Cain told conservative activist Ginni Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, in an interview for The Daily Caller website.

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Cain's charges against Perry prompted a vigorous round of mud-slinging on the campaign trail, with the Perry camp suggesting that candidate Mitt Romney was responsible and Romney's team denying it.

"Our campaign didn't have anything to do with it," Texas Governor Perry told CNN, vowing that if he found out anyone in his camp was responsible for spreading around the information, they would be "out the door."

'DISORIENTING'

Cain told the conservative activist that the experience this week in Washington has been "very disorienting," and he sought to clean up from a bungled answer to a foreign policy question he gave in a PBS interview earlier in the week.

He had said China was trying to acquire a nuclear capability, which it has possessed since the 1960s.

"Maybe I misspoke," he said. "What I meant was China does not have the size of the nuclear capability that we have."

Political commentators say Perry stands to benefit from a collapse of Cain's campaign in their fight to become the conservative alternative to the more moderate Romney, a former Massachusetts governor.

At the same time, most analysts believe Cain would eventually falter anyway, as the former pizza executive has little political experience and has recently suffered a series of stumbles.

But Cain has surged ahead of Romney or even with him in national polls and in Iowa, the state that holds the first U.S. nominating contest of 2012 on January 3.

Cain's campaign has hauled in $1 million in donations in recent days, a spokesman said, despite the accusations.

An extended controversy over Cain may be of no help to any Republican seeking to become the party's challenger to Obama, whose slide in the polls has stopped and who may be gaining traction with his criticism of Republican lawmakers for blocking his jobs legislation.

Cain told Forbes magazine he believes a former employee who now works for Perry, Curt Anderson, was the original source of the story published by news website Politico Sunday that reported on the harassment charges.

Anderson denied it, saying: "I have great respect for Herman and his character and I would never speak ill of him, on the record or off the record."

(Additional reporting by Kim Dixon; Editing by Vicki Allen)

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