Herman Cain goofs on Libya

Republican presidential candidate businessman Herman Cain (Scott Olson / Getty Images / AFP)
A new chapter has been written for Herman Cain’s memoir “The Things I Don’t Know About Foreign Policy” after the GOP hopeful goofed yet again in an interview on Monday.

Sitting down with the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel yesterday, Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain couldn’t quite get the words out to explain his thoughts on the uprising in Libya, one of the most important international events of all of 2011.

When quizzed for his take on President Barack Obama’s involvement in NATO’s takedown of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, Cain became befuddled, pausing hesitantly to seemingly study every syllable that spells out “Libya.”

“So you agreed with President Obama on Libya?” asked an interviewer, a question which prompted the pizzaman to fiddle with his jacket, twitch his eyes, drop his jaw and then quietly mumble, "Okay, Libya." From there, Cain can be seen conjuring up the collapse of his campaign for a full nine seconds as he sat in silence before asking, "President Obama supported the uprising, correct?”

“President Obama called for the removal of Gaddafi. Just wanted to make sure we're talking about the same thing before I say, 'Yes, I agreed. No, I didn't agree,'" said the candidate.

When it looks like Cain is finally ready to tackle the query, he announced "I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason,” before catching himself and interrupting his own response to say, "Nope, that's a different one."

It is around another 14 seconds before Cain told reporters, “I got all this stuff twirling around in my head.”

“Specifically, what did you ask me? Did I agree or did not agree?”

After the interviewers break-down the question piece-by-piece for the pizzaman, he finally reveals his take: “I don’t think enough was done before everything exploded.”

Monday’s incident is only the latest in a series of gaffes that the GOP hopeful has goofed on while attempting to explain his take on foreign affairs. In the few weeks since his candidacy gained steam and skyrocketed him towards the top of the list of Republicans vying for the party’s nod, Cain has time and time again came up short in answering questions on international politics. He warned of China’s nuclear program nearly half a century too late only this month and in October revealed that not only could he name the president of Uzbekistan, but he couldn’t even pronounce the country’s name.

That’s okay, though. Even if he doesn’t get the GOP’s nod for the presidency, he told a radio host this month that he wouldn’t rule out offering his services as a venerable businessman to tackle the role of Secretary of Defense. According to Cain, he’d love to take on the position “to help the generals and commanders on the ground to get what they need, to do what they do best, and that is kick the you-know-what out of everyone in the world.”

To try to calm the storm brewing after his latest blooper, the Herman Cain camp has stepped up to shoot down allegations that their candidate doesn’t know what he’s talking about. "The video is being taken out of context," spokesman JD Gordon tells MSNBC. "He was taking questions for about 30 to 40 minutes on four hours of sleep. He didn't say anything wrong or inaccurate; it just took him a while to recall the specifics of Libya."

“We were all going on four hours sleep, so he was tired,” Gordon adds to the New York Times in a telephone interview. “When he got the Libya question, it took him a while to get his bearings on it, but he got the answer right.”

Meanwhile, Cain had no problem tackling the tough questions. In the latest issue of GQ Magazine, Cain is quick to quip on how the pizza makes the man in America today.

“The more toppings a man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is,” said Cain, “because the more manly man is not afraid of abundance.”

“A manly man don't want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza.”

In case you forgot, Republicans have consistently placed Cain in the top-three of likely candidates for the 2012 nomination in polls conducted by NBC News, Wall Street Journal, CNN and Bloomberg in the last week.