Monday, October 24, 2011

October 24, 2011122 Comments

byByron York Chief Political Correspondent
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Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain says GOP strategist and former top Bush aide Karl Rove is deliberately trying to talk down Cain's campaign in order to benefit rival candidate Mitt Romney.
Appearing on Fox News Monday morning, Rove produced a whiteboard on which he had written a list of recent and not-so-recent Cain gaffes: statements on abortion, taxes, terrorism, neoconservatism, the Mideast, and others.  "The whole effect of this is to not create an image, I think, of him being a flip-flopper," Rove said.  "I think it's to create an image of being not up to the task."
"It's a good thing the voters are not looking at Karl Rove's little whiteboard," Cain said in a phone conversation from a stop in Chicago Monday afternoon.  "I believe it is a deliberate attempt to damage me because I am not, quote unquote, the establishment choice.  But why not go with the choice that the people seem to like?"
Cain accused Rove of bias in favor of candidates with big organizations, lots of money, and prior experience in political office -- all things Cain doesn't have. "What has Karl Rove done?" Cain continued.  "If I become the nominee, he has given Democrats talking points for a commercial to attack me.  It makes no sense unless it's a deliberate attempt on his part to try to push me down so that the candidate he wants rises to the top."
When asked which candidate he believes Rove supports, Cain said, "I believe he wants Romney to get it."
Rove strongly denies Cain's charges. "Herman Cain is the one giving the Democrats material for attack ads," Rove said in a phone conversation Monday afternoon.  "I want the strongest nominee to emerge from the process.  I have no personal favorite.  Fox expects me to call balls and strikes as I see them."
Rove said that even though Cain has made a number of mistakes, it is not too late for his campaign to recover.  "Every candidate is entitled to a few mulligans," Rove said.  "Because of his energy and passion, he gets more than the normal number of mulligans.  But he's running out of them.  And he should not expect everybody to be cheerleading every mistake he makes."

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