Cain to address allegations

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain will hold a news conference on Tuesday to confront the latest sexual harassment allegations that are threatening to derail his campaign.”We’re going to have a press conference. We are taking this head on,” Cain said during an appearance on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” show taped Monday evening.

“There is not an ounce of truth in all of the accusations and my team is putting this stuff together. That’s why I’m willing to do a press conference … to set the record straight,” said Cain, who also joked about the controversy with his TV host.

Cain’s news conference was scheduled to take place in Phoenix at 3 p.m. local time.

Cain, 65, a former pizza company executive, has led many opinion polls in the race to be the Republican nominee to face President Barack Obama, a Democrat, in next year’s election.

Sharon Bialek, who identified herself as a registered Republican and single mother from Chicago, accused Cain on Monday of making an unwanted advance after dinner in Washington in 1997 when she asked for help finding a job after being laid off by the National Restaurant Association, which Cain headed.

On Tuesday, she told ABC’s “Good Morning America” program that she wants Cain to admit his alleged misdeeds and apologize at his press conference.

“I’m not a liar,” said Bialek, who was flanked by her celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred.

She took issue with Cain’s decision to joke about the controversy on TV: “I don’t think there’s anything funny about this subject and for him to do that is just deplorable.

“What I’d really like, it’s not too late, that he can step forward and just end this,” Bialek said. “End it by saying, ‘I did some inappropriate things. It was a long time ago. I apologize.'”

Asked if she believed Cain was fit to be president, Bialek replied: “Not until he tells the truth.”


Cain told Kimmel he would talk about “this new firestorm” at his press conference and vowed to confront head on “any and all future firestorms, because here’s one thing people don’t know about Herman Cain: I’m in it to win it and I’m not going to be discouraged by any of this stuff.”

Cain had said he was done answering questions about sexual harassment allegations against him after earlier reports that two other women lodged formal complaints against him when he headed the restaurant association. Another woman also said she was harassed but did not file a complaint.

Bialek is the first accuser to go public.

In a statement announcing the news conference, the Cain campaign raised questions about Bialek’s credibility and said it was “noteworthy” that she had appeared with Allred.

“After attacking Herman Cain through anonymous accusers for a week, his opponents have now convinced a woman with a long history of severe financial difficulties, including personal bankruptcy, to falsely accuse the Republican front-runner of events occurring over a decade ago for which there is no record, nor even a complaint filed,” the statement said.

Bialek, who made the rounds on morning network television programs, denied she had been offered money or employment in exchange for coming forward and said Allred was working for free.

“I’m just doing this because it’s the right thing to do,” she told ABC.

A majority of Republican voters — and nearly six in 10 Republican supporters of the conservative Tea Party movement — say they are not concerned about the allegations against Cain, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Monday.


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – By JoAnne Allen(Reporting by JoAnne Allen and David Morgan; editing by Vicki Allen and Bill Trott)


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