Herman Cain Still Leads Florida, Despite Sexual-Harassment Allegation "Nonsense"

So far, the sexual-harassment claims against GOP presidential candidate have not affected some of his most valuable voters -- Florida Republicans.

Despite the flurry of allegations that have been raised in the past month -- which Cain refers to as "nonsense" -- they have had absolutely zero effect on Cain's polling numbers in Florida, as he still maintains a six-point lead over former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, according to a Rasmussen poll released yesterday.

Cain led Romney 34-28 in mid-October, and even though the former pizza boss is down four points from last month, so is Romney.

Cain scored 30 percent of the support from Rasmussen's 788 Florida Republicans, while Romney landed 24 percent and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich secured 19 percent.

No other candidate managed to land in double digits.

Cain's VP of communications, J.D. Gordon, points out that "Herman Cain has been consistently leading the Republican pack in Florida since he won the Florida straw poll in September."

Cain arranged a news conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, on Tuesday, blaming the "false allegations" of sexual harassment on the "Democrat machine."

He said that the allegations aren't quite a Democrat "conspiracy" but offered to take a lie-detector test to clear his name, then immediately backtracked.

If Cain's lucky, though, the damage -- if there is any -- has already been done, as the allegations will likely just remain a game of "he said, she said."

That said, Florida Republicans don't seem to be affected by the reports.

"If the media want to continue talking about nonsense, that's fine," Cain said in a statement issued to reporters earlier in the week. "I'm not going to join them. It doesn't look like the citizenry plans to join them either."

Cain managed to used the term "nonsense" to explain the allegations five times in that statement, but he's ready to go back to what he wants to talk about -- his "9-9-9 plan":

Once this kind of nonsense starts, the media's rules say you have to act in a certain way. I am well aware of these rules. And I refuse to play by them.

There are several reasons for this. One is that, lest anyone forget, we actually have serious matters to talk about. Since the media went bananas over this so-called story, my schedule has not changed in the slightest. I have continued to make all planned public appearances. I have continued to answer questions about my 9-9-9 tax reform plan. I have continued to do everything else that our strategy proscribes.

Another reason I refuse to play by these rules is that, by doing it my way, I'm getting much better results. My fundraising has skyrocketed since all this nonsense began. Just this weekend, the Washington Post has come out with a new poll -- taken since all this started -- showing me in the lead nationally, with my numbers on the rise.

As for Romney, his poll numbers never seem to go down -- or up. Add in the fact that he's been MIA from the media for a while, and the recent ad from candidate Jon Huntsman -- whom the New York Times says has the greatest possibility of defeating President Obama next year -- and Mitt's not looking to be in great shape:

The presidential preference primary in Florida is scheduled for January 31.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley