- The Washington Times - Monday, October 31, 2011

THE CAIN COUNT

Almost 3,000 spinoff stories and mentions emerged in the 24 hours following Politico’s anonymously sourced claims that Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain once was accused of sexual harassment. Instant, gleeful speculation swayed the many reports found on a casual Google News count; they connected damning dots — examining everything from the quality of Mr. Cain’s response and his campaign finances, to Republican loyalty and the whereabouts of his wife, Gloria.

“The media are always excited to spread stories damaging to conservatives but have been especially eager to pounce on a story which will hurt Herman Cain since liberal journalists are flummoxed by his success in attracting support from the very conservatives the press corps has painted as racist,” says Brent H. Baker, vice president for research at the Media Research Center, which is tracking the trajectory of the coverage.

“Many reporters consider Cain to be a traitor to his race and so want to knock him down before it’s too late,” Mr. Baker adds.

CAIN STILL ABLE

Politics is a full contact sport tended by frantic journalists. But the show must go on. Despite the ongoing hubbub, the aforementioned Herman Cain will step out to a number of events in the nation’s capital, including the American Spectator Robert L. Bartley Dinner on Tuesday evening. The annual event celebrates the Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial page editor of the Wall Street Journal, staged in the fittingly named “presidential ballroom” of a glittering downtown hotel.

There’s a keynote address from econo-whiz Rep. Paul Ryan. Among the guests: Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s spirited spouse, Anita, Donald H. Rumsfeld and wife, Joyce, and Sen. Jeff Sessions, Alabama Republican.

So cheer up, everybody. The evening menu features a very nice cannelloni and wine from Virginia’s Rappahannock Cellars, organizers say. Oh, and dancing at 10 p.m.

PRESIDENTIAL NUMBERS

73 inches (height), 181 pounds (weight), 107/71 (blood pressure) 67 (heart rate), 193 (total cholesterol).

From President Obama’s periodic physical exam, released Monday by examining physician Dr. Jeffrey Kuhlman, who pronounced Mr. Obama “fit for duty.”

OUT IN IOWA

And far from the madding Beltway crowds: Greetings from Pella, Iowa — where five Republican presidential hopefuls gather Tuesday under the auspices of the National Association of Manufacturers to talk about manufacturing, taxes, energy, trade, regulation and a “renaissance” of U.S. productivity.

Reps. Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum parse out the finer points before the moderators: Iowa Gov. Terry E. Branstad and PBS “Nightly Business” host Tom Hudson. The event will be broadcast live beginning at 11 a.m. EST by Iowa Public Television; find it here: www.youtube.com/iowapublictelevision

OCCUPADO

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