Joel Bennett, the attorney for one of the women who accused Herman Cain of sexual harassment several years ago, issued a statement from his client in which she stands by the claims she made against him in the 1990s and says that there was a “series of inappropriate behaviors and unwanted advances” that led to a monetary settlement. The statement, which he read at a news conference, also says that the woman has no plans to discuss the matter publicly or privately and that “it would be extremely painful to do so.”
The National Restaurant Association also issued a statement from its CEO Dawn Sweeney, which said that the trade group had approved the statement issued by Bennett.
“Based upon the information currently available, we can confirm that more than a decade ago, in July 1999, Mr. Bennett’s client filed a formal internal complaint, in accordance with the association’s existing policies prohibiting discrimination and harassment. Mr. Herman Cain disputed the allegations in the complaint. The association and Mr. Bennett’s client subsequently entered into an agreement to resolve the matter without any admission of liability. Mr. Cain was not a party to that agreement,” the statement read.
The controversy has not yet had an impact on Cain’s high poll numbers. In an ABC News/Washington Post poll published Nov. 3 that was taken after news of the allegations had surfaced, he came in second with 23 percent, trailing rival Mitt Romney by just one point. Cain's support is up from 16 percent in a poll taken last month. In addition, 55 percent of Republican and Republican-leaning independents said they don’t consider the allegations a serious matter, but 23 percent of the Republicans said that it makes them less likely to support him.
Cain also has experienced a significant fundraising boost. His campaign issued a statement late Friday announcing that he has received more than $1.6 million in contributions since Sunday, "nearly four-fold the campaign's normal monthly average."
(Photo: AP Photo/Mike Carlson)