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Herman Cain’s worst enemy

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By Michelle Malkin  •  November 9, 2011 11:10 AM

It’s not any of the women coming forward.

It’s his top aide and chief of staff Mark Block. This is now the second time he’s popped off with bogus assertions and insinuations. Not ready for prime time — or 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Just gobsmackingly amateur-hour:

Herman Cain’s chief-of-staff Mark Block on Tuesday wrongly claimed that the son of a woman who accused Cain of sexual harassment worked at POLITICO, a news outlet that first broke the story.

“At the press conference it was brought up that Karen Kraushaar had come out as one of the women, and we’ve come to find out that her son works at Politico,” Block said.

Kraushaar told CNN Tuesday that she accused Cain of sexual harassment when he led the National Restaurant Association in the late 1990s. Details of her case emerged through her lawyer last week, but she refused to go public at the time.

When asked if Block had confirmed the information about her “son,” the chief-of-staff said “yes.”

“We’ve confirmed … that he does indeed work at POLITICO and that’s his mother, yes,” Block said.

Josh Kraushaar isn’t Karen Kraushaar’s son, nor does he work for Politico anymore.

Cain spokesman J.D. Gordon acknowledged Block’s mistake in an email to CNN.

“Based upon information available at the time of Mr. Block’s Tuesday night interview on Fox News, the campaign was led to believe that Mr. Josh Kraushaar, currently with the National Journal and a former employee of Politico, was the son of Karen Kraushaar,” Gordon said. “Mr. Josh Kraushaar is in fact, not related to Ms. Karen Kraushaar.”

And there’s all this:

The flailing about doesn’t surprise Florida Republican operative Chuck Winn, a one-time Cain supporter and founder of the Stolen Valor veterans group that exposes candidates who embellish their military records.

“I began having serious misgivings about the lack of standards and integrity on Herman’s campaign after I attended a 23 Oct meeting presided over by Mark Block and Jamie Brazil in Tampa,” Winn said in an email. “Block began by letting us know how he engineered Nixon’s 72 landslide (quite a feat since he was only 16) and then uttered some truly magnificent and marvelous hokum about a ‘Sun Tzu-based stealth strategy with an army of thousands,’ attempting to mask the absence of any coherent strategy.”

Then there’s the matter of potential lawbreaking. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel uncovered documents showing that a Block-run nonprofit, Prosperity USA, might have loaned about $40,000 to the political campaign he runs, Friends of Herman Cain, for travel and other campaign expenses. That could violate federal election regulations and tax laws.

“I just don’t see how they can justify this,” a GOP elections expert told the paper. “It’s a total mess.”

Herman Cain has campaigned on his reputation as a visionary business leader with the guts and know-how to reward what works and cut loose what doesn’t.

Time to practice what he preaches.

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