Third time the charm? Herman Cain endorses Mitt Romney

Published: Thursday, May 17 2012 10:17 a.m. MDT

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, businessman Herman Cain, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., applaud on stage before a Republican presidential debate in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011.

Associated Press

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Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain endorsed Mitt Romney on Wednesday.

"Cain, the former chief executive of Godfather's Pizza, held an endorsement event in Washington, D.C.," CNN.com reported. "He was flanked by Rep. Michele Bachmann, herself a former presidential candidate, and Rep. Steve King of Iowa. … In January, after teasing an 'unconventional endorsement' in the GOP presidential race, Cain came out in support of 'the people,' saying it was the beginning of a political revolution. … Later in January, Cain announced he was endorsing former House Speaker Newt Gingrich ahead of Florida's closely watched GOP primary."

In large part owing to the fact the announcement marked the third time that Cain has decided to make an endorsement since he dropped out of the presidential race in December, many journalists viewed the Wednesday press conference with a degree of skepticism — treating the event more like joke fodder than straight news.

Along those lines, The Atlantic's David Graham described Wednesday's proceedings thusly: "A press conference to announce the latest endorsement was hastily called at the National Republican Club. Despite the star power, it was somewhat sparsely attended. The audience was about evenly split between three groups: the press; a dozen or so curious realtors, in town for a rally Thursday, who saw the assembly and wandered over to ask who was speaking; and the aging white men in well-tailored suits who can always be found puttering around such clubs. The speakers were occasionally overpowered by the low rumble of passing tour buses."

Politico even went so far as to publish an entire article titled, "Herman Cain's Mitt Romney endorsement: 10 funny tweets." Here's a sampling of some of the tweets that caught Politico's eye:

  • @LOLGOP: "REPORT: Herman Cain had to endorse today to get in on Mitt's ambassadorship Groupon."
  • @mollyesque, aka The Atlantic political reporter Molly Ball: "Unfortunately, the garbage truck we were all hoping to use as subtle metaphor in our stories has left the scene of the Cain presser."
  • @daveweigel, aka Slate reporter David Weigel: "Wait, people are actually covering this Cain endorsement? And you judge me for covering Gary Johnson."
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