More Trouble Brews for the Cain Campaign

Possible campaign finance violations add to the stir caused by sexual harassment allegations.


There's more trouble brewing for Herman Cain. The news media are starting to pay attention to a report by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that Cain's Republican presidential campaign may have accepted about $40,000 in services and equipment from a tax-exempt group co-founded by Mark Block, Cain's chief of staff. Such an arrangement would violate campaign finance laws, which prohibit tax-exempt organizations from engaging in political activity or contributing to campaigns.

The Cain campaign is investigating to determine if there was a problem, according to a Cain spokesman.

[See a collection of political cartoons on the 2012 GOP hopefuls.]

The Journal Sentinel said the tax-exempt group, Prosperity USA, paid for Cain travel expenses on trips to Iowa, Houston, Las Vegas, and Louisiana, and paid $3,764 for iPads for his campaign. (For more see here and here.)

The tax-exempt issue is the second problem that has emerged for Cain's campaign in the past few days. He is also under criticism for his handling of allegations from two former female employees that he sexually harassed them while they all worked for the National Restaurant Associatlon in the 1990s. Cain has shifted his story in explaining the details of the incident, but he says the allegations are "totally baseless and totally false."

[Vote: Can Herman Cain Put the Sexual Harassment Story Behind Him?]

The latest developments in that case focus on reports this morning that one of the women who accused Cain of sexual harassment now wants her story revealed, according to her lawyer, Joel Bennett. Bennett says his client is forbidden from telling her story because of a non-disclosure agreement she signed upon leaving the restaurant association, where Cain was president from 1996-1999. Bennett wants the association to waive the agreement so she can speak publicly about what happened, according to the Washington Post.

  • Read about how Herman Cain bungled crisis management.
  • See photos of 2012 GOP hopefuls on the campaign trail
  • Vote for your pick for the 2012 GOP nomination.