OUR VIEW: Mental miscues shouldn’t take GOP spotlightTexas Gov. Rick Perry and former Godfather’s Pizza executive Herman Cain are now even, with both experiencing head-shaking gaffes while campaigning to be the next Republican candidate for president.
By: Editorial Board, The Daily Republic
Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Godfather’s Pizza executive Herman Cain are now even, with both experiencing head-shaking gaffes while campaigning to be the next Republican candidate for president.
Perry’s mind-lock came last week, when he couldn’t remember one of the three federal departments he would close if elected in 2012. He recalled that he has campaigned to close the Department of Education and the Department of Commerce, but he couldn’t remember the third: the Department of Energy.
Of course, his mistake happened on national TV — he called it a “brain freeze” — and became the talk of the nation last week as people wondered if a man who can’t remember his own campaign goals is truly presidential timber.
We hope Herman Cain wasn’t snickering in his coat sleeve too much, because now he has done the same thing. During a meeting with the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Cain was asked if he agreed with President Obama’s handling of the recent uprising in Libya.
Cain paused and then said, “OK, Libya.” He then paused again.
“President Obama supported the uprising, correct?” he asked. “President Obama called for the removal of Qaddafi — just want to make sure we’re talking about the same thing before I say yes I agree or no I don’t agree. I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason — nope, that’s a different one.”
Cain then paused for another five seconds and said “I’ve got all this stuff twirling around in my head. Specifically, what are you asking me?”
Not very presidential, but very human. So was the Perry misstep last week.
We won’t make up our mind about candidates based on verbal or mental mistakes a year before the election. Today, we have no idea who will be our favored Republican candidate, but we suspect developments in the coming months will shape our opinion — not mental mistakes that ooze out of tired men under the spotlight of immense scrutiny.
We are surprised, however, that these missteps gain more traction and create more conversation than the growing controversy surrounding Cain, who is accused by four women of boorish conduct and harassment in the 1990s.
Cain has vehemently denied the allegations, but witnesses continue to line up.
We don’t know if the reports are true. It’s quite obvious that someone is lying.
We are a bit amazed, however, that Cain and Perry can seemingly fall in the eyes of public opinion for forgetting portions of their campaign plan but Cain doesn’t appear to have lost any ground due to these terrible accusations of misconduct.
If someone can prove the accusations against Cain, he shouldn’t be president. The claims against him are much more serious than simply forgetting campaign material.