Accusations Haven't Really Dented Herman Cain's Support

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Over half of Republican voters don't view Herman Cain's resurfaced sexual harassment accusations as a "serious matter," and 69 percent of those who lean Republican say the ever-evolving storyline won't affect their vote either way, according to a newly released ABC News/Washington Post poll. The responses in the poll provide a glimpse at how Republican voters are taking last Sunday's Politico report--testing the theory that conservatives won't be so quick to abandon Cain. 

In the ABC/Post poll he's still virtually tied with Mitt Romney atop the GOP field with 23 percent support to Romney's 24 percent, which is a lower figure than the pizza magnate's 7 point lead over Romney he held in Wednesday's Quinnipiac survey conducted mostly before the accusations resurfaced. But, from the ABC/Post poll's findings on attitudes toward the allegations, many Cain backers don't find the allegations serious.

Those who do think the accusations are serious, however, aren't supporting him as intensely.

Fifty-five percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say they do not regard the allegation of sexual misconduct as a serious matter. But while 22 percent of Cain’s own supporters call it serious, that jumps to 44 percent among those who aren’t backing Cain. Among Romney’s supporters it’s similar, at 49 percent.
...Indeed, among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents who say the matter is not serious, Cain leads Romney by 12 points, 32 percent to 20 percent. Among those who say it is serious, by contrast, Romney leads Cain by an 18-point margin, 31-13 percent.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.