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Politics

In ‘top tier,’ Herman Cain says there’s a bullseye on his back

Herman Cain is enjoying life in the top tier. But with a sudden surge in some national polls, the former pizza chain executive is aware of what’s coming.

“You get this bull’s eye on your back. And people take pot shots left and right,” Cain said Friday at the Value Voters Summit in Washington. “But I don’t want you to be unclear about where I stand. … [Because] this long shot may not be a long shot any longer.”

Cain gave an overview of his platform, a mix of traditional conservative policy prescriptions and anti-Obama red meat.

And, yes, after some delay, he got to what the audience was waiting and ready for: his “9-9-9" plan.

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Cain’s speech was among the most well-received of this first day of the gathering. His critique of the “anti-capitalism, anti-free market” movement known as Occupy Wall Street was certainly a winner with this audience.

But Cain subtly acknowledged some of the doubt about his candidacy – that it is more about setting up a Mike Huckabee-esque career as a conservative media personality.

"[People ask], ‘Why are you running to be president? To be president!” Cain said. “America has problems. I’m a problem solver. That’s why I’m running.”

He also plugged his new book, copies of which he was to be signing elsewhere at the conference moments later.

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