Inside the Godfather's Wallet: Herman Cain's Financial Disclosure


How did the former CEO float $500,000 for his campaign? A hodgepodge of corporate director fees and investments has filled his pockets.

Herman Cain - Evan Vucci AP - banner.jpg

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain has collected over $680,000 in corporate director fees and stock-option exercises since the beginning of 2010, according to a just-released financial disclosure form. The paperwork also indicates that the former Godfather's Pizza CEO used some of his personal wealth to float his campaign a loan worth upwards of $500,000.

Cain also reported a salary of $165,183 over that period from Cox Radio, where he hosted his own radio show until February of this year. His financial disclosure form provides the first peek into the financial holdings of the suddenly red-hot Republican contender. Unlike his rivals, who as former officeholders have long had to make their finances public, Cain has never had to share details of his holdings. He asked for--and received--a 90-day extension for filing the form released on Wednesday.

The candidate whose anti-Washington message and sunny campaigning style have rocketed him to the top of Republican primary polls listed assets between $100,001 and $250,000 in each of three entities:

  • The Coca-Cola Company;
  • A checking account with SunTrust Bank;
  • A SunTrust money market.

The federal financial disclosure forms that presidential candidates are required to complete ask them to list assets and liablities in broad ranges of value rather than specific amounts.

Cain's financial disclosure form suggests he's in the middle of the GOP PAC when it comes to wealth. He is far less well-off than former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, whose net worth has been pegged at north of $190 million, but appears to be better-off than Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who reported losses on investments and real estate when he released his 2012 income tax returns.

Cain collected $120,000 in director fees from Hallmark Cards; $202,500 from Georgia agricultural-equipment firm Agco; and $359,008 in fees and stock options exercised from Whirlpool, a home-appliances manufacturer based in Michigan.

He reported profits between $50,001 and $100,000 on sales of 2,000 shares in Whirlpool common stock. On separate lines, he registered a sale of 2,163 shares of Coca-Cola stock, worth between $15,001 and $50,000, and of 5,738 additional shares of Coca-Cola, good for between $100,000 and $1 million. According to his campaign biography, Cain worked for Coke as a computer systems analyst.

His assets with Godfather's Pizza, where Cain served as CEO from 1986 until 1995, clock in between $100,001 and $250,000. THE New Voice, the public-speaking and publishing entity of which he claims 100 percent ownership, is worth between $50,001 and $100,000, according to Cain's filing.

Image credit: Evan Vucci/AP

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Jim O'Sullivan is chief analyst for National Journal Daily.

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