Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain announced today that he is withdrawing from the race for the GOP nomination to take on pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
Cain has been dogged in recent weeks by allegations from several women that he had inappropriate relationships with them and he disclosed that he had paid for one woman’s expenses for some time without his knowledge. The developments and negative publicity cost Cain considerable support with Republican voters and deprived him of the front-runner status he build up during the Fall months.
Recent polls in Iowa, for example, had Cain dropping from leading the race with 25-30 percent of the vote to coming in at 8 percent — under double digits and placing him firmly in the second-tier of the race.
“As of today, with alot of prayer and soul searching, I am suspending my presidential campaign,” he said, citing false allegations against him and the pain and hurt is has caused his family.
“We had to come to this conclusion, that it would be best to suspend this campaign,” Cain added about the negative impact recent weeks’ events have had on his campaign fundraising.
The former businessman told a crowd of thousands assembled at his headquarters in Georgia that he would make an endorsement eventually but that it would not be for Obama.
Several of the GOP candidates issued comments responding to Cain’s decision:
“I am proud to know Herman Cain and consider him a friend and I know he will continue to be a powerful voice for years to come,” Newt Gingrich said. “Herman Cain’s 999 plan got our country talking about the critical issue of tax reform and he elevated the dialogue of the primary.”
Mitt Romney added: “Herman’s campaign was one of ideas. His decision was based on what is best for him and his family. We wish Herman and Gloria the best.”
Texas Gov. Rick Perry said, “I know this was a difficult decision for Herman Cain, his family and his supporters. He helped invigorate conservative voters and our nation with a discussion of major tax reform.”
Fomer Sen. Rick Santorum also commented, saying, “Karen and I understand how trying national political campaigns are – not just on the candidates, but the candidate’s family. We respect Herman’s decision to suspend his campaign and trust that he made the best decision for his family. As we have for all our fellow candidates, we will continue to keep Herman and his entire family in our prayers.”
“Herman Cain provided an important voice to this process,” Rep. Michele Bachmann said in a statement. “His ideas and energy generated tremendous enthusiasm for the conservative movement at a time it was so desperately needed to restore confidence in our country.”
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman added, “Herman Cain offered a unique and valuable voice to the debate over how to reform our country’s uncompetitive tax code and turn around the economy.”
Cain brought a pro-life perspective to the presidential race and recently signed a pro-life pledge sponsored by the Susan B. Anthony List. Cain reversed position and decided to sign a pro-life pledge on abortion the prominent pro-life group has had other Republican presidential hopefuls sign that Cain initially declined to attach his name to months ago.
“This decision is consistent with the Herman Cain we have come to know,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of SBA List, about the pro-life presidential candidate. “He understands the wound abortion is to America and especially to the most vulnerable among us – people that Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger labeled ‘human weeds.’
“We commend Mr. Cain for adding his name to the list of candidates who have signed the pledge, and should he be elected to the White House, we look forward to him leading the fight to protect women and unborn children.”
Cain explained his pro-life convictions and commitments today after signing the pledge saying, “I am an associate Baptist Minister and am 100 percent pro-life. I believe that all human beings have intrinsic dignity. My children and grandchildren mean the world to me, and I feel so blessed that they are realizing their full potential.”
Cain continued, “I will not appoint judges who legislate from the bench. I will appoint judges who will strictly interpret the U.S. Constitution and understand the limitations on government and separations of power set forth in the U.S. Constitution. Where my powers in the Executive Branch are concerned, I will work at all times to oppose government funding of abortion. I will veto any legislation that contains funds for abortions. I will do everything that a President can do constitutionally to advance the culture of life.”
In addition to Herman Cain, Michele Bachman, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Rick Santorum have also signed the SBA List Pro-Life Presidential Leadership Pledge. Thad McCotter and Tim Pawlenty also signed, but Pawlenty has since withdrawn from the race.
With Cain signing the pledge, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman remain the only top Republican presidential candidates to have not signed the pledge even though both are running as pro-life candidates on abortion.
Cain has repeatedly taken on the Planned Parenthood abortion business and said it targets minority Americans by placing abortion centers in urban areas with a high percentage of blacks and Hispanics.