Will the Herman Cain Endorsement Help Newt Gingrich? (ContributorNetwork)

Posted by aifkod on January 31, 2012

COMMENTARY | The endorsement of Newt Gingrich by Herman Cain should be a game changer for the conservative challenger to Mitt Romney. But would Cain bring much to the Gingrich campaign? Can he cover the ex-House Speaker’s incendiary comments that critics have labeled racist? Did the endorsement come too late? If it works, could it help him in the fall against Barack Obama?

Does Cain Bring Much To The Gingrich Campaign?

Herman Cain is more than just a great Horatio Alger rags-to-riches story of the self-made man who became the business executive, which contrasts well with Romney’s background. Cain is also an electrifying speaker, who demonstrated to my students such skills first-hand a few years. But then again, Gingrich isn’t a bad speaker himself, and isn’t a blueblood, and is also from Georgia, so there’s no geographic balance. The endorsement is something that would have helped Romney more than Gingrich.

Can Cain Help Gingrich Overcome His Critics’ Accusations Of Racism?

The former House Speaker frequently labels Barack Obama as the “food stamp president,” a line that has media members claiming such words represent code words designed to disparage blacks. But with Cain standing by his side, such charges against Gingrich seem less credible.

Did The Cain Endorsement Come Too Late?

While the Gingrich campaign is undoubtedly pleased to see Cain on its side, it probably could have used such support earlier, when Romney was unleashing his comeback against the South Carolina primary winner. After all, Romney had the money and organization, but Gingrich only had debate performances to motivate people. Romney leads in early voting, according to Fox News. Each ballot cast before Cain’s endorsement is lost. And picking up Cain’s selection has to compete with headlines touting Romney’s big lead.

Would the Cain Endorsement Help Gingrich in the GOP Primaries and the Fall Election?

Winning Florida, or making it a close contest, is one thing. Securing the GOP nomination and beating President Obama is another thing. A study by the Pew Research Center found Cain’s impact on the GOP nomination would be similar to John McCain’s backing of Mitt Romney: A slight bump in the polls.

However, like the endorsement of several Republicans, such as George W. Bush, Sarah Palin, Donald Trump and Michele Bachmann would be counterproductive in the fall contest. Only 8 percent say they are more likely to vote for a candidate backed by Cain in November, compared to 21 percent who would be less likely to vote for a Cain-supported nominee, with the rest being indifferent.

Cain’s support of Gingrich could help, but probably could have helped earlier when Gingrich had Romney on the ropes after South Carolina. Many of his positive attributes are those held by Gingrich. He could insulate the ex-congressman from racism charges, and provide a small boost in his quest to win the nomination, yet polls indicated it would not help Gingrich that must in the race against Obama.

Source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/obama/*http%3A//news.yahoo.com/s/ac/20120130/pl_ac/10901615_will_the_herman_cain_endorsement_help_newt_gingrich

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