Cain’s lawyer: 13-yr affair should be off-limits

Atlanta’s Fox 5 News today broke the story of a Georgia woman who claims she had a 13-year extramarital affair with Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain. The station reported that Cain’s attorney, Len Wood, sent the following statement:

“Mr. Cain has been informed today that your television station plans to broadcast a story this evening in which a female will make an accusation that she engaged in a 13-year long physical relationship with Mr. Cain. This is not an accusation of harassment in the workplace – this is not an accusation of an assault – which are subject matters of legitimate inquiry to a political candidate.

“Rather, this appears to be an accusation of private, alleged consensual conduct between adults – a subject matter which is not a proper subject of inquiry by the media or the public. No individual, whether a private citizen, a candidate for public office or a public official, should be questioned about his or her private sexual life. The public’s right to know and the media’s right to report has boundaries and most certainly those boundaries end outside of one’s bedroom door.”

“Mr. Cain has alerted his wife to this new accusation and discussed it with her. He has no obligation to discuss these types of accusations publicly with the media and he will not do so even if his principled position is viewed unfavorably by members of the media.”

Really? “Not a proper subject of inquiry by the media or the public? Nobody, including those in public life, “should be questioned about his or her private sexual life?” I guess Wood and Cain weren’t reading the news around the time that this alleged affair began 13 years ago.

And I’m sure the names Larry Craig, Anthony Weiner, Chris Lee, John Ensign and David Wu don’t mean anything to them, either.

Well, I guess at least ascendant GOP candidate Newt Gingrich welcomes news of Cain’s extramarital affair… oh, wait, never mind.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Elwood

    Billy Jeff was impeached for perjury and obstructing justice.

    This applies to Cain how?

  • Josh Richman

    By Cain’s logic, Clinton never should’ve been questioned in the first place about Paula Jones and Monica Lewinsky; I doubt that most in his party agree.

  • Lisa Vorderbrueggen

    Let’s not forget Gary Hart, either!

  • Josh Richman

    Lisa, I was just keeping it to the last 13 years; if we go back further, this post would’ve gone on and on and on…

  • Elwood

    @ Josh

    Yes, but Billy Jeff WAS asked and he lied.

    He was impeached for lying, not playing hide the weenie with Monica Lewinsky.

  • Lisa Vorderbrueggen

    I guess I have dated myself!

  • RR, Senile Columnist

    I frankly don’t give a flyin’ craperoo about the sex lives of the candidates. I am not voting for Devoted Spouse of the Year. FDR and LBJ were adulterers; Hayes and Carter were not. Which leaders achieved more?

  • rew

    Herm is not-ready-for-prime-time, he’s got a sloppy personal life, his candidacy is fading in the west, the east, the north, and the south. And we haven’t even got into his skimpy knowledge of international affairs. Finally, the company he was CEO of makes terrible Pizza – for this alone voters should reject his goofball candidacy.

  • John W

    Cain and his attorney need to get their messages coordinated. The attorney all but acknowledges the affair but says it’s nobody’s business. Cain flat out denies it. I prefer the days of JFK, when the press didn’t bother with this stuff. However, if a married politician is foolin’ around, he ought to lay off on the sanctimonious “sanctimony of marriage” crap.

  • Ralph Hoffmann

    John W: What do you mean? Isn’t a marriage between a man and a woman and his mistresses?