Herman Cain gets criticism as he moves up in polls
CYRIL JOSH BARKER Amsterdam News Staff | 1/17/2012, 10:22 a.m.
Judging by recent poll numbers, Black Republican candidate Herman Cain has a shot-despite the odds-of becoming the Republican presidential nominee, as the Georgia businessman and political novice continues to inch up in the polls.
Reports indicate that Cain's latest triumph is leading in the polls in the critical Republican primary state of South Carolina. The American Research Group poll puts Cain ahead of the so-called media frontrunner Mitt Romney by 1 percent-a huge turnaround from only three weeks ago, when polls had Cain as a second-tier candidate.
During Tuesday night's debate at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, which looked more like a roundtable discussion for bashing President Barack Obama, Cain also found himself for the first time on the receiving end of several attacks, most notably for his "9-9-9" economic plan.
Cain's plan would replace the current tax system and limit taxes for individuals and corporations to 9 percent, as well as institute a 9 percent sales tax. His plan would eliminate payroll taxes, capital gains taxes and estate taxes.
However, his proposal, which would under-tax the rich and corporations and create a heavier burden on working families, the poor and people of color, was not even given much credence by many of his fellow Republicans running for the presidency.
Cain has also been a large critic of welfare, saying, "Programs today are designed to make people more dependent rather than less dependent."
During the debate, most of the attacks on Cain's economic plan came from Romney, who said that his plan just doesn't work.
"I'm not going to lay it out all for you tonight," Cain fired back. "Mitt has had six years to be working on a plan. I have been in this for about eight weeks."
Rep. Michele Bachmann also threw shots at Cain, saying his plan would hurt the economy.
Cain has been an outspoken conservative voice. Appearing on "Face the Nation" on CBS on Oct. 9 alongside Newt Gingrich, Cain echoed his strong opposition to the Occupy Wall Street protests, which have been going on for over a month now. Prior to the show, Cain said the protesters were "jealous" of Americans with "good jobs."
"The free market system and capitalism are two of the things that have allowed this nation and this economy to become the biggest in the world," he said. "Even though we have our challenges, I believe that the protests are more anti-capitalism and anti-free market than anything else."
Cain maintains that Obama is to blame for America's current economic state and that the protesters are placing their anger in the wrong place.
"Part of it is jealousy," Cain said. "I stand by that. And here's why I don't have a lot of patience with that. My parents, they never played the victim card. My parents never said, 'We hope that the rich people lose something so we can get something.' No, my dad's idea was, 'I want to work hard enough so I can buy a Cadillac-not take somebody else's.'"
Up next, Cain makes stops this week at Ohio Christian University, the Arizona GOP Dinner and the Western Republican Leadership Conference in Las Vegas.