Here’s the Nonsense: When you are in trouble hire the best attorney you can find and let them do all the talking for you.
Here’s the Horse Sense: When you are in trouble hire the best attorney you can find and let them do most of the talking for you, but don’t give them carte blanche.
Herman Cain’s attorney is handling the latest allegation against him improperly. Sure, it might be what a good attorney would do, but there is something much bigger at stake here. Mr. Cain needs to step in and stop his attorney before more damage is done.
Today when I saw the response of Herman Cain’s attorney to the latest allegations against him it was very apparent that Mr. Cain just made a huge mistake.
An attorney’s job is only to think about your legal situation, not your reputation. That means that there may be times when you have to take control back from them and demand that things are said differently than the attorney may recommend.
The handling of this latest allegation by Mr. Cain’s attorney is just such a situation. And before I go on, let me say that there has still been no proof provided to support any allegation that has been brought against Mr. Cain. And because of that, and also the historical record of false and destructive attacks in politics against innocent people, I will not assume Mr. Cain is guilty. I will allow him the respect, moral support, and justice he is due and assume he is innocent until he is proven otherwise. If he is proven guilty then he will lose my moral support and respect.
When this afternoon’s latest allegation came out that a woman claims to have had a 13 year affair with Mr. Cain, his attorney replied like any good attorney looking out for their client’s liability would respond. According to CNN.com, Lin Wood, Mr. Cain’s attorney said, “This is not an accusation of harassment in the workplace -- this is not an accusation of an assault -- which are subject matters of legitimate inquiry to a political candidate.
"Rather, this appears to be an accusation of private, alleged consensual conduct between adults -- a subject matter which is not a proper subject of inquiry by the media or the public. No individual, whether a private citizen, a candidate for public office or a public official, should be questioned about his or her private sexual life. The public's right to know and the media's right to report has boundaries and most certainly those boundaries end outside of one's bedroom door.”
The problem with this response is that even though Herman Cain immediately denied that there had been an affair, his attorney did not corroborate that position. Instead, in an effort to try to get this set aside and taken out of the discussion of his presidential candidacy, his attorney says that these types of matters are personal and should not be considerations in the political race.
Now certainly the politicians in this country have proven that they couldn’t care less about these things, unless their opponents are involved in them. The media never cares unless it’s a conservative being accused. After all, they have looked the other way so many times it’s ridiculous, including when President Clinton was accused of committing perjury. To the media it was “only sex” and not important.
For this discussion we’ll set aside the issue of whether cheating on your spouse and the most sacred commitment you ever make is any measure of what kind of person you are. Instead, let’s just stick with my original thought here.
The reason Mr. Cain’s attorney is wrong and Mr. Cain is wrong to allow the answer that was given is simply because it does two things that will harm him even more:
1.) It undercuts Mr. Cain’s claim that this is a false allegation and that he is innocent because it ignores Mr. Cain’s denial of the accusation.
2.) It implies that Mr. Cain agrees with his attorney’s way of phrasing the response and therein causes the public to assume that Mr. Cain’s claims that he is a moral man who believes in family values are hypocritical. In other words, it implies that the accusations might be true and, therefore, they are using the argument that it’s personal to get the discussion dropped.
Mr. Cain may have an attorney that thinks the client’s best interest is being served, but for a conservative what is most important is the truth. If Mr. Cain is who he claims to be, that he is a man of values and principles and truth, then the only stand to take is that this accusation is a lie. He would be better off losing his bid for the GOP nomination and standing for principle by not backing off his claim of innocence than he would be to get the discussion dropped because “it’s private.” Integrity is what matters here more than anything else.
The question Mr. Cain has to ask himself is whether the truth is more important than winning. If he’s a true conservative then that is the stand he will take and he needs to tell his attorney that that is the message that must be conveyed.
And, for you doubters of his innocence let me say one other thing. If he is guilty then he needs to admit it and bow out of the race. If he is guilty he needs to first and foremost seek God’s forgiveness, then his wife’s, then his children’s, and then that of the public.
Conservative values are about the truth. Conservative values are about standing for principle regardless of the cost. In the long run he will be better off to stand on the truth. There is no price too high to pay for the truth. And there is no prize you could win that would make forsaking the truth worthwhile.
It is critically important that voters realize that this next election is about principles above all else. The kind of people we elect to leadership can no longer be what we see over and over in government. We can no longer stand for people who compromise truth. We can no longer stand for people who show that they believe the end justifies the means. We must elect leaders who will stand for principle regardless of the cost, no matter how high it is.