Alexa

4th Cain accuser coming forward

4th Cain accuser coming forward

A fourth accuser plans to come forward Monday with accusations of sexual harassment against Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, as the scandal engulfing the political novice's campaign entered a second week.
Gloria Allred, a high-profile lawyer who specializes in discrimination, said the woman would speak at a news conference later Monday in New York. She would be the first accuser to speak publicly against Cain, and at least the fourth to accuse him of inappropriate behavior. Allred did not give the woman's name.
Cain was ducking out of view in advance of the next party debate Wednesday, having declared Saturday that he is done answering questions about allegations of sexual harassment lodged by women who worked with him in the 1990s.
But Cain spokesman J.D. Gordon said the campaign would have more to say about the latest development later in the day.
"Mr. Cain has said over the past two days at public events that we could see other baseless allegations made against him as this appalling smear campaign continues," Gordon said. "He has never acted in the way alleged by inside-the-Beltway media, and his distinguished record over 40 years spent climbing the corporate ladder speaks for itself."
Allred has represented several high-profile cases, including Amber Frey, a wittiness against convicted California killer Scott Peterson, and a woman whom news reports accused of having an affair with golfer Tiger Woods.
"I consider sexual harassment the No. 1 problem in the workplace," Allred told the AP in an interview last week. "It denies equal opportunity in the work force. If (women) don't protest it, they'll have to continue to suffer."
While most of Cain's fellow Republican hopefuls must be silently enjoying the bubbling and highly public scandal surrounding Cain, a political newcomer who has shot to the top of the field, they likely aren't happy that the focus on his candidacy has drawn attention from them.
And the scandal is occurring less than two months before the first votes are cast in the process to nominate a challenger to Democratic President Barack Obama in 2012.
Even fellow front-runner Mitt Romney, the favorite of the Republican establishment, had trouble generating much attention when he gave a significant Washington speech on Friday about cutting government spending and overhauling Medicare, the government health insurance program for Americans of retirement age _ both key issues for the party's candidates.
While Cain initially blamed Texas Gov. Rick Perry's campaign for leaking the sexual harassment allegations and significant payouts to the women who lodged them, he has since backed off that charge, choosing instead to attack the news media for paying too much attention to charges he has denied.
But two key Republicans said on Sunday that it was time for Cain to say more _ to get the facts out.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a former party chairman, told NBC's "Meet the Press" that "people need to know what the facts are." He said Cain should "get those out as quickly as possible."
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, a Republican presidential contender, said on the same program: "It's up to Herman Cain to get the information out, and get it out in total."
For any of the Republican challengers to make a come-from-behind dash with so little time remaining before the state nominating primary votes and caucuses _ which begin in January _ they must be able to be heard above the din of the Cain scandal. But to this point neither his anonymous women accusers nor the candidate appear ready to talk more.
The three original accusers, who worked with Cain when he was head of the National Restaurant Association, a trade group, apparently fear damage to their reputations and careers. Cain apparently believes that his silence going forward will cause the allegations to fade from relevance.
So far polls indicated the scandal has not cut into Cain's support, which has him neck-and-neck with Romney at the top of the Republican heap, and the candidate has been hauling in donations that far outstrip his fundraising before the allegations became public.
Perry, once seen as the best hope of the conservative tea party wing of the Republicans, has disappeared from news reports with the exception of a video of a bizarre appearance in the state of New Hampshire, raising questions about his sobriety at the event.
Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and the candidate with the biggest campaign bankroll, continues to cruise along, staying away from reporters and apparently comfortable with his level of support _ banking on challengers like Cain and Perry to self-destruct along the way.
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AP writer Jack Gillum contributed to this report.