Herman Cain, the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza who at one point was the front-runner in the 2012 Republican primary, has died. He was 74.
The news was confirmed by his official website.
Cain, who had previously battled and survived stage 4 colon cancer, had contracted COVID-19 following a rally for Donald Trump in Tulsa, Oklahoma in June. He had been hospitalized in Atlanta since July 1. Aides close to him were hopeful for recovery according to his official website but he never advanced towards the next phase in recovery.
His Twitter account and social media updates vaguely mentioned his battle with COVID and instead pivoted towards skepticism towards the virus and the nation’s handling of it.
A graduate of Morehouse College with a degree in mathematics, Cain rose quickly in conservative ranks after he took on Bill Clinton in a televised chat about small business when he was the president-elect of the National Restaurant Association.
In 2011, he announced he was running for President after a failed run in 2000. Touting a 9-9-9 economic plan, he won numerous straw polls and was seen at the time as a potential nominee. However, scandal rocked his campaign as numerous women came forth to accuse Cain of sexual harassment. He suspended his campaign in December 2011 and later became a columnist and frequent guest on conservative outlets such as FoxNews and NewsMax.
He was briefly touted as a pick to join the board of the Federal Reserve in the early days of the Trump administration but declined to join.
Cain leaves behind his wife Gloria, his son Vincent, daughter Melaine and numerous grandchildren.