While I appreciate Herman Cain’s charisma and his Reaganesque ability to articulate the small government/personal freedom message that has animated our party at least for the last thirty years, I have several concerns about the personable businessman and do not back him for the White House nor do I share my co-blogger’s enthusiasm for the candidate.
In many ways, I see his appeal on the right in the 2012 cycle as similar to Barack Obama’s appeal to the left in 2008 cycle. Both are charismatic men, running as outsiders to the political establishment.
Only Cain has made clear his commitment to conservative principles in his campaign while Obama obscured his advocacy of big-government notions in his. And Cain has a record of accomplishment in the private sector — with the concomitant executive experience. Oh, and the media has scrutinized the Republican’s record with a fine-toothed comb while paying little, if any, attention to Obama’s.
Herman Cain is fun, and he’s generally right. He has enormous energy and a sense of humor. He may not be ready to be president, but he was certainly ready to run for president, just like then Senator Obama in 2007. The big difference is that in 2007 MSM supported Obama’s ambitions and that in 2011 MSM pushes back against Cain’s, reflecting the media elite’s valuing of Obama’s Harvard Law/University of Chicago credentials, time in the Illinois State Senate and cup-of-coffee years in the U.S. Senate much more than Cain’s decades in the private sector. Obama’s resume matched the values set of the Manhattan-Beltway media elite, so they put wind into his political sails. Not so with the Hermanator. (Note also that the president’s books were signs of White House readiness. Cain’s merely an expression of his opportunism.)
Go back to the two Times‘ stories linked and read through them substituting “Barack Obama” for “Herman Cain.” Now try and find stories from 2007-2008 that asked the same questions about then Senator Obama and his readiness to be president.
Read the whole thing.