Businessman Herman Cain, today, became the first Republican of note to announce the development of an exploratory campaign to examine a possible bid for the Republican nomination for president.
Though Cain may be the first to put together a committee, the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO and black conservative is not expected to end the Republican primary presidential campaign with a first place showing and the nomination to face pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
Little known outside of fiscally conservative circles, where he has been a fixture at Tea Party events pushing lower taxes, Cain is a national talk radio show host who resides in Georgia. In an interview announcing the exploratory campaign, Cain seemed to recognize and relish the battle to establish himself in what is expected to become a crowded field of candidates.
“People who say that Herman Cain has no chance of winning the nomination for the Republican Party or win the in presidency – I simply say thank you,” he told CNN today. “Because all my life I have been in situations where I wasn’t supposed to become VP of Pillsbury, I wasn’t supposed to be able to turn Godfather’s Pizza around. I wasn’t supposed to succeed in climbing the corporate ladder in corporate America.”
“So to the people who say I don’t have a chance I say, thank you. Because that inspires me,” he said.
Cain has officially filed papers with the FEC to begin an exploratory committee, which is the first step announcing a full-fledged bid for the nomination. Such a committee allows a candidate to put together a campaign team and begin fundraising.
The businessman, who is pro-life, said the announcement came after many months of “prayerful consideration.”
“The American Dream is under attack. In fact, a recent survey found 67% of the American People believe America is headed in the wrong direction. Sadly, this comes as no surprise to those of us who have watched an out-of-control federal government that spends recklessly, taxes too much and oversteps its Constitutional limits far too often,” he wrote on his web site.
Cain was previously a vice president for Burger King, served as chairman of the board of directors for the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, and was the chairman of the National Restaurant Association.
He has never before held elective office but was a candidate for the U.S. Senate in Georgia in 2004 and came in second place to Congressman Johnny Isakson in the Republican primary.
Conservative blogger Matt Lewis indicates Cain will not spend any of his wealth on his campaign.
“Cain’s challenge will be to raise the kind of funds needed to run a serious presidential campaign. In prior conversations, Cain implied to me that he would not self-fund his campaign,” he says.
Lewis also believes Cain has the potential to put together a surprisingly competitive campaign, should he decide to run.
“But though Cain has himself admitted that he would be a “dark horse” candidate, he will be greatly aided by the fact that he is a full-spectrum conservative with solid fiscal and social credentials. Christian conservatives love him, and The Club for Growth endorsed him for Senate in 2004. Cain is also close with fiscal conservative and two-time presidential candidate Steve Forbes. Depending on the field, there is great potential for him to rally conservative activists and bloggers to his cause,” he writes.