The GOP Debate: Bachmann Attacks Cain By Suggesting Cain's 999 Becomes 666 When Upended
October 11th, 2011
UK Daily Mail
By Paul Bentley
Presidential hopeful and former pizza magnate Herman Cain came under fire this evening at the latest GOP debate, as he felt the increased scrutiny of life at the top of the polls.
After more than trebling his levels of support in the last month, Cain is becoming an increasing threat to his fellow Republican presidential hopefuls. He currently sits in second place, not far behind front runner Mitt Romney.
And his peers have certainly taken notice - taking turns to undermine his policies in front of the television cameras at Dartmouth College this evening.
Under fire: Herman Cain faced repeated criticisms of his 999 tax plan during the round table debate
Cain, who has soared in the polls in the last month, had a knockback earlier in the day after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie - who last week announced he will not run for president after weeks of speculation - announced he will support Mr Romney.
Before the debate, Cain had jumped in a GOP poll to 18 per cent, closing in on current leader Mitt Romney, who is barely ahead on 20 per cent.
Highlighting his new position in the polls, Cain was honoured with the debate's first question. In the first minute he managed to mention his 999 plan twice - a policy which would place a nine per cent tax on income and corporations as well as a nine per cent sales tax.
While referencing the plan offered him much air time, it also gave the other candidates the opportunity to offer their opinions about the strategy.
Michele Bachmann ridiculed Cain's plan most successfully, saying that when scrutinised or 'turned upside down' the 999 principle became Satan's number, 666.
'When you take the 999 plan and you turn it upside down, I think the devil is in the details,' she said.
She added that the proposal was not a jobs plan, but rather a tax plan.
The planned 999 policy has come in for criticism before from tax analysts, who claim it would cause those less well off to pay more.
Jon Huntsman, meanwhile, joked that at first he thought the 999 tax plan was a pizza price, not a real economic proposal.
GALLUP POLL: MITT JUST IN FRONT
Mitt Romney - 20%
Herman Cain - 18%
Rick Perry - 15%
Ron Paul - 8%
Newt Gingrich - 7%
Michele Bachmann - 5%
Rick Santorum - 3%
Jon Huntsman - 2%
Utah's former governor said during the candidates' debate that he isn't open to Cain's plan, arguing that the country needs something 'doable, doable, doable rather than a slogan.
He said the proposal is little more than 'a catchy phrase'.
'I thought it was the price of a pizza when I first heard it,' he added.
Cain is the former chief executive of Godfather's Pizza. He says his proposal would be easier, fairer and would cut taxes for Americans.
Cain hit back, defending the economic team behind his 999 tax plan while refusing to name his advisers.
'My advisers come from the American people,' Cain said. 'I also have a number of other economists who helped me with this 999 plan. It didn't come off a pizza box.'
When not distracted by each other, the candidates took swipes at President Obama, accusing him of failing to lead properly while indulging in too much regulation and too much politicking.