First, because he will not be the nominee of the GOP. The Rich Android will. It’s a curious thing really: the GOP (I can’t speak for Dems) keeps winding up with candidates that, oddly, nobody but the fabulously wealthy seem to want or like, yet somehow we all have the illusion that this is the end result of a democratic process. I have no explanation for that. I merely note that the phenomenon of “I’ll hold my nose and vote for this guy” is an odd thing to encounter in the overwhelming majority of voters for a party that is (supposedly) nominating candidates on the basis of majority preference. I reckon there’s some statistical explanation for how a majority of people can keep choosing candidates that a majority of people can’t stand, but I majored in English, not statistics.
Second, I will not vote for Cain because he is part of the now standard horde of “conservative” enthusiasts for torture, which the Church says is gravely and intrinsically immoral. (Note to newbies: “enhanced interrogation is GOP euphemism for “torture”. “Waterboarding” (which is a euphemism for “drowning”) is torture, and if you are inclined to try to lie that it is not, please read this first. If you still want to try to lie that it is not, please trouble somebody else’s comboxes with your lies. Oh, and note the enthusiastic applause of the base (pardon the pun) in the audience):
Yes, that’s “faithful conservative Catholic” Rick Santorum raising his hand along with Cain. Oddly, what is always studiously ignored in these discusssion is that waterboarding is but one of the forms of torture enthusiastically supported by the GOP. There are lots of others and several forms helped to murder various prisoners–something our consequentialists on the Right are as eager to discuss as pro-abort consquentialists on the left are to talk about Kermit Gosnell and his chamber of horrors. Clues for the clueless: when people die from “enhanced interrogation” it was torture. Cain (and most of the GOP field) want this fruitless, immoral, stupid, criminal and dangerous stuff revived. Actual interrogators say, “This is fruitless, immoral, stupid, criminal and dangerous.” But the GOP is all about CYA on this matter, not on what’s good for America.
Third, I will not vote for Cain because the Leader of the Free World should have a freakin’ clue about foreign affairs and not say bonehead things like, “[Y]es [the Chinese are] a military threat. They’ve indicated that they’re trying to develop nuclear capability and they want to develop more aircraft carriers like we have. So yes, we have to consider them a military threat.”
Good to know that Cain’s knowledge Chinese military capacity is somewhere around 1963.
Relatedly, the Leader of the Free World should not cavilierly say, “Whatever! Sounds fine to me!” to the prospect of a unilateral launch of war in the Mideast.
Finally, despite the patchup jobs done after the attempt to parse things in Cuomo-like manner, the fact remains that, as the American Catholic (not exactly a lefty site) says, Cain’s rhetoric on abortion is “muddled“.
But, as I say, none of this matters because the guy won’t be nominated. He is, as TAC also notes, “not ready for prime time”. He is but the latest of several straw lances being flung at Romney by a frustrated base that keeps thinking they will get somebody they want yet who keep getting somebody nobody really seems to want (Bush, Dole, Bush, McCain, now the Android). Once Romney is nominated, we will then be instructed, yet again, that if we don’t vote for the guy nobody really wants, we obviously prefer dead babies etc. and so forth. Cuz Romney is just soooooo prolife.
Me: I will once again vote for some doomed quixotic candidate who does not commit me to supporting grave intrinsic evil. My vote makes no difference anyway, so I might as well not use it to damn my own soul. I’m not that cheap a date.
That said, let me add one sign of hope that has emerged for me out of Cain’s campaign, though it is no more a reason to vote for him than it is to vote against him: namely, the fact that he is black and nobody cares. When the story about his sexual harrassment charges broke and the fanatically pro-Clinton media picked it up with all the hypocritical breathlessness they could muster, it was easy to assume dirty tricks from the Dems, for the Dems certainly do salivate over such things–selectively. But, mirabile dictu, Cain wound up accusing, not Dems, but that swaggering Evangelical without a conscience, Rick Perry, of leaking the story. Perry, who evidently thought he could get traction with the Base by playing the “Scary Black Guy Who Wants to Rape Your Woman” card, has been cratering for several weeks and recently released an imbecilic vid attempting to paint his inarticulate stupidity as a virtue…
The Economist has an adequate retort for this sort of idiocy:
Not to be overly pedantic, but talking is a kind of doing. Indeed, talking is primarily how one gets things done in politics. How does Mr Perry convey that he is a doer, and not a talker? By talking. What else is there? Interpretative dance? A presidential candidate unable to best a foe in a public exchange, or to communicate his position on a complex issue when the heat is on, is about as useful as a one-legged fullback.
Anyway, a desperate Perry, seeing his brief candle outshone by Cain, evidently decided his “I may not know what I’m talking about, but I’m ready to do whatever it is I may figure out I mean” campaign needed augmenting with more oomph. So he whipped out some good old fashioned Anita Hill stuff to pull down the latest Not-Romney competitor.
The Good News? It totally did not fly with the allegedly racist base, who continued to gush over Cain and who did not immediate go for the hoary narrative of the Scary Black Guy. That this had so little purchase is, I think, a good sign about the electorate in an otherwise bleak election campaign from a fantastically bleak field of “conservative” candidates.
Of course, that’s not to say we should assume there’s no problem either. When you have five harassment accusations – three from women he worked with, one from a GOP pollster, and one from an Iowa radio host, it does look rather like yet another debacle is in the wings for yet another “family values” representative of the Thing that Used to Be Conservatism. Between that and serial husband Newt Gingrich modestly putting himself forward as a Defender of Traditional Marriage (after explaining that his adulteries and betrayals were due to the fact that he just loved America so darn much), the GOP has an embarrassment of riches in the whole Traditional Values department. That’s the great thing about our ruling classes, they never miss an opportunity to contribute to the kaleidoscope of hypocrisy and cynicism that is American national politics.
Put not your trust in princes.