Herman Cain explains ads showing ‘deaths’ of rabbit, goldfish

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

Why is former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain releasing provocative ads showing a rabbit being shot and a goldfish struggling to breathe on land?

“Because it gets your attention,” Cain said in a conference call Tuesday night with reporters. “That’s why.” (RELATED: Watch the ad here)

“We live in a 24/7 information overload society and if I went out there with namby-pamby ads to drive home a point, nobody would notice,” he said. “So that’s why. Because it’s intended to be provocative.”

Cain released a video this week showing a man shooting a rabbit that had been catapulted into the air like a clay pigeon. “This is small business under the current tax code,” a girl says in the video.

In another ad, the video shows a goldfish gasping for air out of its fishbowl, with the girl saying, “This is the economy on stimulus.”

Cain made a point of saying no animals were hurt in the production of either video.

“The liberals are trying to paint this as I’m killing animals,” Cain said. “I point out to them that the goldfish is still alive. We didn’t kill the goldfish. We put the goldfish back in the bowl.”

As for the rabbit? “The rabbit that we shot was a toy stuffed rabbit,” he said. “It was not a real rabbit.”

“The objective of the rabbit ad is to get people to wake up to fact that we need to throw out the tax code and start over,” Cain said.

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