And we apologize most profusely for keeping up coverage of this, so far, non-story, but if the media keeps yammering about it, one might as well respond.
Cain wasn’t even the signatory to the decade-and-a-half settlement that he’s now accused of “covering up” because he doesn’t remember it clearly.
The settlement agreement between the National Restaurant Association and a woman who accused Herman Cain of sexual harassment was reached in September 1999–and was not signed by Cain himself, according to Joel Bennett, a lawyer for the woman.
Bennett, who has a copy of the settlement agreement, said four people signed it: the woman, two lawyers representing the association and Bennett himself.
Bennett said the agreement was resolved relatively quickly, about two or three months after she complained.
That means it may have been reached after Cain left the association, and Bennett said it’s conceivable that Cain didn’t even know about it.
Mind you, this is the attorney for the accuser saying this, something to keep in mind before the accusations of “paid for lackey spin doctor” start flying.
I only say “maybe” it explains his lack of knowledge because, timeline aside, it seems to me that if you’re accused of something after you leave a job, you still hear about it. Someone is going to call you up and ask for your side of it.
Er, how can we put this nicely?
Not if it’s a “petty cash” accusation settled for bus fare, at least not if you’re to believe former National Restaurant Association board chairman Joseph Fassler, who ought to know a thing or two about how those things are dealt with and especially how they were dealt with back in the 90s, where you couldn’t hold open a door for a woman without facing possible rape charges.
Fassler said his four years in leadership positions on the association’s board — including one year as chairman and another as past chairman — overlapped with two and one-half years of Cain’s time as CEO. Fassler was first elected to the board in 1984, and was chairman in 1997.
While he said he had no reason to doubt the accuracy of reports that the restaurant trade group made five-figure payments to employees then embroiled in what is now a campaign scandal, Fassler said he was never informed about those payments while on the board.
It’s fair to assume, then, that maybe Fassler’s boss, Cain, wasn’t informed about them either. At least to us it is but, then again, we haven’t got ourselves an uppity challenger to Mitt “I can’t have illegals, I’m running for president, for Pete’s sakes!” Romney that we need to lynch.
Asked why no complaint about Herman Cain ever reached the board, Fassler put the episode in perspective, essentially seeing the amount of money involved as small-potatoes.
“This agreement? If it was of a major magnitude, I would have been shocked to not have known about it. So my takeaway was that it must not have been of a major magnitude,” he told TheDC.
Fassler drew a clear distinction between legal settlements for significant amounts of money and routine severance packages that would normally be handled far beneath the board’s level of responsibility.
“At the association, people had a level of authority — an amount of money that they can spend before they have to bring it to the board [for approval],” he explained. “In this case, if it was over their authority level — and I don’t remember what that level was — they would have to bring it to the executive committee [of the board].
“If it’s a routine matter, they don’t have to bring it to us. We never got it, so it was a routine matter.”
“Routine matter?” The hell it was! It was quite possibly the most damaging, horrific, outrageous scandal since, since, since FOREVAH!
So there you have it from somebody who actually knows what he’s talking about.
As to ourself, we remain utterly agnostic on the whole thing as we can’t possibly know that nothing happened with the moral certitude of the pundits having fits and foaming around the mouth who apparently know that something horrid did happen here absent any actual, verifiable facts at all.
But we’re old fashioned that way. We like to have the facts in before we start bundling the kindling at the foot of the pole.