|Herman Cain of Georgia (Photo: lifenews.com)|
Herman Cain was declared the winner of the debate – a fairly obvious choice in my view. He gave thoughtful, logical, and clear answers to the questions that came his way. His track record shows that he is well-informed on the issues and can articulate a conservative point of view. Back to him a bit later.
Newt Gingrich’s well-publicized “gaffe” on Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) budget plan didn’t help his cause, and, just as bad, was his statement about health insurance mandates being OK. That alone shows a serious problem vis-à-vis the Constitution. He tried to backtrack on all this, but some damage was done, and if Charles Krauthammer is right, that’s enough to wreck whatever chance Newt had for the nomination. I’m not quite so sure, since comebacks are not at all uncommon in politics.
Mitt Romney’s chances are in doubt because of his unapologetic support of Romneycare in Massachusetts. While that program is on only slightly firmer constitutional ground than Obamacare (which is clearly unconstitutional), it’s still a government insurance mandate, and a form of socialized medicine.
Rep. Ron Paul (TX) is running, and while he is unlikely to win, he could be a factor because of money-raising ability, and the fact that his ideas are being taken a good deal more seriously now than in past years. The deficit and general economic situation make the idea of sound money seem more attractive, and the Fed has brought plenty of doubt upon itself in terms of monetary policy. On the other hand, his debate performance was overshadowed by Cain's. And not many people support legalizing heroin.
Gov. Tim Pawlenty (MN) would probably be a good compromise candidate, but may not have enough appeal to be the front-runner.
Out of the race, as we all know, are Mike Huckabee, Hayley Barbour, and Donald Trump. Trump appeared to have little to no chance for the nomination, but the other two were potentially viable candidates.
We still haven’t heard (as of this writing) whether former Gov. Sarah Palin (AK), Gov. Mitch Daniels (IN), Rep. Michele Bachmann (MN), or Gov. Chris Christie (NJ) will be running, although at least two of these probably will. Establishment figures are said to be enthusiastically courting Mitch Daniels to run, fearing that no one else might be attractive enough to defeat Barack Obama.  If the GOP gets a genuine conservative, Tea Party-type candidate who can explain and advance actual conservatism (limited government, low taxes, strong defense, and free markets), that candidate can win. If another “moderate” like McCain (e.g., Huntsman or Gary Johnson) is nominated, the race will probably be lost.
Back to Herman Cain. The Daily Caller reported on May 18 that polls after the S. C. debate show that Cain is one of the leading candidates, rather than near last place as previously . He does not have the name recognition (yet) that the others have, some having run and lost in 2008, but he has several things some of the others do not: real-world leadership experience, private sector work experience, executive responsibility in business, and an appealing common-sense approach to things. He can see the conservative side of the issues, which should be obvious to all who are supposed to be conservatives, but for some reason isn’t. Some “conservatives” like the big-government approach to things, and would be content to try to “improve” the Democrats’ socialist ideas.
C. Edmund Wright, at American Thinker, lists his countdown of reasons why Cain should make a good candidate. One of these is
7. Will break every rule set for him by “strategists”: This one might be my favorite. Cain has never counted on political strategists to get him where he is now, and this alone separates him from all other candidates. Lord help the first “strategist” from the RNC who advises Cain to “tone it down” or “soften his position.” 
Another plus Wright emphasizes is that Cain’s candidacy would neutralize the race card and maybe we could just get over this race thing. He lists several other good reasons to consider Cain.
In case you missed the S. C. debate or haven’t heard much about or from Herman Cain, here are a couple of short videos that may interest you. See YouTube for more.
Cain announces exploratory committee with Neil Cavuto on 1/12/11:
On gasoline prices:
 Mike Allen, “GOP elite see Mitch Daniels as 2012 savior,” 05/18/2011, Politico.
 Alexis Levinson, “What a difference a debate makes: Cain surges to the top in latest TheDC/ConservativeHome Tracking Poll,” 05/18/2011, The Daily Caller.
 C. Edmund Wright, “Top Ten Reasons to Support Herman Cain for President,” 01/26/2011, American Thinker.