An attorney for a woman who accused GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain of sexual harassment more than 10 years ago told reporters that his client stands by her claims, but does not want to provide details about what the attorney described as a series of incidents of inappropriate behavior on Cain’s part.
The woman, who has chosen to remain anonymous, had her attorney, Joel Bennett, read a prepared statement during a news conference this afternoon. The statement disputed Cain’s claims from earlier in the week that he was innocent of the charges that he sexually harassed the woman when he was head of the National Restaurant Association during the late 1990s. Another woman from the association also reportedly accused Cain during his tenure there.
Bennett said the married woman did not “see any value in revisiting” the issue, saying, “In fact, it would be extremely painful to do so.
“Everybody is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect in the workplace,” Bennett read. “... My client stands by the complaint she made.”
The restaurant group also issued a statement acknowledging that the allegations were made and that a sealed settlement was negotiated, but that no one, including Cain, admitted liability in the case.
“Based upon the information currently available, we can confirm that more than a decade ago, in July 1999, Mr. Bennett’s client filed a formal internal complaint, in accordance with the association’s existing policies prohibiting discrimination and harassment,” the NRA statement read. “Mr. Herman Cain disputed the allegations in the complaint. The association and Mr. Bennett’s client subsequently entered into an agreement to resolve the matter, without any admission of liability. Mr. Cain was not a party to that agreement. The agreement contains mutual confidentiality obligations. Notwithstanding the association’s ongoing policy of maintaining the privacy of all personnel matters, we have advised Mr. Bennett that we are willing to waive the confidentiality of this matter and permit Mr. Bennett’s client to comment. As indicated in Mr. Bennett’s statement, his client prefers not to be further involved with this matter and we will respect her decision.”
The Georgia businessman and frontrunner for the GOP nomination was in Washington, D.C., today and delivered a speech to a gathering of conservative activists.
Cain made only passing reference to the sexual harassment allegations. The crowd, which gave him a warm reception, appeared unconcerned with the charges.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.