Cain's former receptionist at Godfather's Pizza says he was a "perfect gentleman" to women in the office, though she admits he liked to "tease" people. Eva Vachal was in her late twenties when she started work as the corporate receptionist at Godfather's under Cain, she says in an interview with National Review. Vachal has come forward to vouch for her old boss, who faces several allegations of sexual harassment and has had difficulty moving his campaign past them. NR's Robert Costa writes:
Vachal says that during her entire career at Godfather’s Pizza, she never heard about any improper conduct, harassment, or inappropriate behavior by Cain, even in the form of water-cooler gossip. “Believe me, receptionists know everything,” she says. “They see everything.” ...
As she sees it, Cain was likely misinterpreted by the women who received settlements. At Godfather’s Pizza, within the executive suite, he was always a professional, she says. But he did enjoy complimenting staffers, be it on their work or on their sharp outfits.
“He had a very teasing attitude,” Vachal recalls. “He reminded me of my father and me. We’re both little rascals; we love to tease people.”
“Once in a while, he would tell me how attractive I looked in my pantsuit, or whatever, but I liked it,” she says. “I get it. I understand teasing. I don’t mind compliments.”
Most of the allegations made against Cain came from employees at the National Restaurant Association. And we could see how what seems like "teasing" to one women can come across as an untoward advance by another. Then again, no one would classify the famous car scene described by Sharon Bialek, in which Cain allegedly forces her head toward his crotch, as "teasing." And it's also a sign of a campaign not putting the issue of sexual harassment allegations behind it when one woman saying its candidate did not harrass her is considered a news break.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.