- The Washington Times - Monday, October 3, 2011

Why is it such a shock that in a Florida straw poll Herman Cain received 37.1 percent of the vote? The polling makes it abundantly clear why.

Average Republicans are dissatisfied with the list of candidates. They are tired of politicians who promise the same old, same old (i.e., Mitt Romney, Texas Gov. Rick Perry). Mr. Cain has no political background to sink him. He comes across as plain-spoken, articulate, God-fearing, honest and intelligent; his support of Israel is strong and unbending, and his 9-9-9 tax plan is new and deserves consideration. Juggling the same old economic theories have gotten us nowhere.

Even some of his contenders would choose him for vice president as one capable of being president. Mr. Cain has proven himself successful in the business world (having been CEO of Godfather’s Pizza). His immigration policy is both bold and compassionate, containing English-speaking and e-Verify requirements for those who are here on the way to citizenship.

In addition, Mr. Cain’s personal history as a cancer survivor shows him to be courageous, persevering and hope-filled, a man used to going up against the odds and winning. Mr. Cain is a conservative black man, which is in itself a mark of courage and independence.

He is also not beholden to large contributors, but rather has depended on his own money. He promises nothing to his contributors except that he will be honest, favoring no one but the people of the United States.

Mr. Cain’s background, in business and his personal life, is without blemish. There are no skeletons in this closet.

How could you ask for a better candidate? I urge him to name Marco Rubio of Florida as his running mate. Together they would be unbeatable. Both have come up from poverty to reach the ranks of those with integrity.

PETER J. RIGA

Houston