He's better known for demonizing Muslims than for the one thing that distinguishes him from Republican rivals: his early opposition to universal health care.
On Fox News Sunday, GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain took off after his favorite target again. President Obama? Nope. Onerous tax rates? Uh-uh. ACORN? Not even close. Cain was too busy demagoguing Muslims, this time throwing in with protesters who want to stop construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Cain claims that he is driven by a desire to head off the imposition of Sharia law--that phantom menace with which some vanishingly small sliver of the conservative base is feverishly consumed. Cain is their most outspoken champion. (The Muslims in Murfreesboro have worshipped peacefully there for three decades, so whatever nefarious deeds he suspects them of perpetrating aren't much in evidence.)
Meanwhile, Cain has going for him what any half-sentient politician would recognize as political gold, something that would not only distinguish him from the GOP field but in the process point up the greatest weakness of the frontrunner, Mitt Romney: Cain was passionately against universal healthcare back in 1994, and took on its champion at the time, Bill Clinton, in a memorable confrontation that made national news. Here's the clip:
So here we have Cain on record condemning a Democratic president for his health care plan a full 15 years before Obamacare. Cain can justifiably tell conservatives that he was a seer. This ought to be his ticket to GOP stardom. If he had any sense at all he would remind people of his opposition at every opportunity and do his utmost in debates and candidate forums to contrast his record with that of Romney, who of course signed a universal health care law in Massachusetts that became the model for Obamacare. Other candidates have assailed the new health care law, promised to repeal it, or vowed to issue waivers. But none can match Cain's purity, the evidence of which is sitting right there on YouTube just waiting to rocket around the web.
Instead, Cain hasn't laid a glove on the frontrunner, spends much of his time tilting at windmills like Sharia law, and remains stuck at around 10 percent in the polls. The vast majority of Republicans, in other words, don't want Cain to be their nominee. You'd think that a guy as sharp with numbers as the CEO in that clip would do the math and realize his error.