Matt Lewis

Herman Cain responds to Rove and Krauthammer

Fresh off his presidential campaign announcement Sunday, Herman Cain sought to push back against criticism from some prominent GOP opinion leaders. Karl Rove, for example, called him a “talk radio guy” and Charles Krauthammer said his candidacy was for “entertainment.”

“Karl Rove, I respect. Krauthammer, I have a lot of respect for — he’s one of the thoughtful conservatives out there,” Cain told The Daily Caller.  “My response is … I’m not running to become president of the establishment. I am running to become president of the people of the United States of America.”

“[Rove and Krauthammer] will eventually wake up and realize that I am a serious candidate for the nomination” — Cain added — when they “realize there is a disconnect between establishment thinking and real world thinking.”

Speaking of average Americans, Cain has impressed many conservatives with his speaking ability, not to mention his credentials in terms of business and leadership experience, but has sometimes stumbled over foreign policy questions.

During the first GOP debate in South Carolina, for example, Cain refused talk specifically about his plan for Afghanistan. He also seemed to stumble during a Fox News Sunday question over the “right of return” for Palestinians.

But Cain told TheDC: “Foreign policy experience and knowledge is more than about bombs and bullets — It’s about bombs, bullets and economics.

In that regard, Cain is very well-traveled.

While serving on the boards of multinational corporations such as Whirlpool and AGCO — as well as during his time as president of the National Restaurant Association — Cain took business trips to China, South Africa, Italy, Germany, Great Britain, Brazil, Australia and Japan. Personally, he has also traveled to Canada and Mexico, and says he will travel this year — during the campaign — to Israel.

“Is it just bombs and bullets? — no — there is an economic component…I know more about foreign economic policy than most people.”